Symptoms of Post-traumatic Stress Disorder in Victims of Trafficking
Background: Recently studies have emerged that examine various traumatized populations, which have shed light on the course of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). The differences in the symptomatology of PTSD between “at-risk” populations must be understood, so that people are not misdiagnosed and therapeutic interventions are tailored to each group. The purpose of this study was to examine the symptoms of PTSD in victims of trafficking, an under-researched population, and to establish how their symptoms differ from those experienced by other victims of abuse and by females in the general population of Greece.
Results: Significant differences were found between the females from the general population, the abused women, and the victims of trafficking on the TSI and BBTS. The abused women’s mean scores on the TSI were significantly higher than the scores of the non-abused women. However, the victims of trafficking demonstrated a unique presentation of trauma symptoms. The victims of trafficking also responded significantly different on the BBTS than the other abused women.
Conclusions: Our results suggest that victims of trafficking are a group of abused women who are at higher risk for developing PTSD. Not only have these women’s symptoms met the DSM-V-TR criteria for PTSD, but they also display additional pathology. It is necessary to be aware of the varieties of PTSD symptoms and to practice a treatment modality that is sensitive to this group’s specific situation.
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