Self-reported sleep disturbances: A comparison of adult female rape victims with PTSD and non-traumatized women

Carole-Rae Reed, University of Pennsylvania

Abstract

Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) frequently occurs as a response to rape. Rape victims and other trauma survivors frequently report sleep disturbances following the traumatic event. Responses of 23 rape victims with PTSD and 23 comparison women to sleep-related items on four standardized instruments were analyzed. The instruments used were the Impact of Events Scale (Horowitz, Wilner, Alvarez, 1979), the Symptom Checklist-90-Revised (Derogatis, 1977), the Beck Depression Inventory (Beck, Rush, Shaw, & Emery, 1979), and the PENN Inventory for Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (Hammarberg, 1990). All sleep-related items analyzed showed significant positive associations with rape and PTSD. Predictive power of each item was assessed. Being awakened from sleep during the rape was not significantly associated with self-reported sleep disturbances. Findings support the assertion that sleep disturbances are a hallmark of PTSD (Ross et al., 1989). The Information Processing of Trauma Model (Burgess & Hartman, 1988; Hartman & Burgess, 1988) was supported and its usefulness in predicting and explaining response to sexual trauma was expanded to include adult female rape victims. Future research in sleep and trauma with female populations is strongly indicated.

Subject Area

Nursing|Mental health|Psychotherapy|Womens studies

Recommended Citation

Reed, Carole-Rae, "Self-reported sleep disturbances: A comparison of adult female rape victims with PTSD and non-traumatized women" (1997). Dissertations available from ProQuest. AAI9800918.
https://repository.upenn.edu/dissertations/AAI9800918

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