The role of negative cognitions in co-occurring posttraumatic stress disorder and depression: Examination of interpersonal and noninterpersonal trauma survivors


Objective: To examine negative cognitions underlying both posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and depression following trauma. Method: A mixed-gender motor vehicle accident (N = 297, Mage = 43.49 years) sample and a female intimate partner violence (N = 242, Mage = 36.95 years) sample was cross-sectionally studied at research clinics of two universities. Results: When diagnostic groups (PTSD+/−, depression+/−) were studied, no significant interactions were noted for any of the three forms of negative cognitions (negative thoughts about the self, negative thoughts about the world, and self-blame) in either sample. When continuous ratings of PTSD and depression were studied, the results showed that negative thoughts about the self were linked to both PTSD and depression. Conclusion: Findings suggest that it may be beneficial to target negative thoughts about the self when treating PTSD and depression together.

Publication Title

Journal of Clinical Psychology