Neuroticism Increases PTSD Symptom Severity by Amplifying the Emotionality, Rehearsal, and Centrality of Trauma Memories.

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2017-10

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Abstract

OBJECTIVE:Although it is well established that neuroticism increases the risk of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), little is known about the mechanisms that promote PTSD in individuals with elevated levels of neuroticism. Across two studies, we examined the cognitive-affective processes through which neuroticism leads to greater PTSD symptom severity. METHOD:Community-dwelling adults with trauma histories varying widely in severity (Study 1) and clinically diagnosed individuals exposed to DSM-IV-TR A1 criterion traumas (Study 2) completed measures of neuroticism, negative affectivity, trauma memory characteristics, and PTSD symptom severity. RESULTS:Longitudinal data in Study 1 showed that individuals with higher scores on two measures of neuroticism assessed approximately three decades apart in young adulthood and midlife reported trauma memories accompanied by more intense physiological reactions, more frequent involuntary rehearsal, and greater perceived centrality to identity in older adulthood. These properties of trauma memories were in turn associated with more severe PTSD symptoms. Study 2 replicated these findings using cross-sectional data from individuals with severe trauma histories and three additional measures of neuroticism. CONCLUSIONS:Results suggest that neuroticism leads to PTSD symptoms by magnifying the emotionality, availability, and centrality of trauma memories as proposed in mnemonic models of PTSD.

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10.1111/jopy.12278

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Ogle, Christin M, Ilene C Siegler, Jean C Beckham and David C Rubin (2017). Neuroticism Increases PTSD Symptom Severity by Amplifying the Emotionality, Rehearsal, and Centrality of Trauma Memories. Journal of personality, 85(5). pp. 702–715. 10.1111/jopy.12278 Retrieved from https://hdl.handle.net/10161/19028.

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Scholars@Duke

Siegler

Ilene C. Siegler

Professor in Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences

My research efforts are in the area of developmental health psychology and organized around understanding the role of personality in health and disease in middle and later life.

My primary research activity is as Principal Investigator of the UNC Alumni Heart Study (UNCAHS) a prospective epidemiologic study of 5000 middle aged men and women and 1200 of their spouses that evaluates the role of personality on coronary heart disease and coronary heart disease risk, cancer, and normal aging.

As head of Cancer Prevention Research Unit , I study the role of psychological factors related to mammography behavior and estrogen replacement therapy is being studied in UNCAHS women.








REPRESENTATIVE PUBLICATIONS

Siegler, I.C., Zonderman, A.B., Barefoot, J.C., Williams, R.B., Jr., Costa, P.T., Jr., & McCrae, R. R. (1990). Predicting personality from college MMPI scores: Implications for follow-up studies in psychosomatic medicine. Psychosomatic Medicine, 52, 644-652.

Siegler, I.C., Peterson, B.L., Barefoot, J.C., & Williams, R.B. (1992). Hostility during late adolescence predicts coronary risk factors at midlife. American Journal of Epidemiology, 138(2), 146-154.

Siegler, I.C., Peterson, B.L., Barefoot, J.C., Harvin, S.H. Dahlstrom, W.G., Kaplan, B.H., Costa, P.T. Jr., & Williams, R.B. (1992). Using college alumni populations in epidemiologic research: The UNC Alumni Heart Study. Journal of Clinical Epidemiology, 45(11), 1243-1250.

Siegler, I.C., Dawson, D.V., & Welsh, K.A. (1994). Caregiver ratings of personality change in Alzheimer's disease patients: A replication. Psychology and Aging, 9, 464-466.

Siegler, I.C., Feaganes, J.R., & Rimer, B.K. (1995). Predictors of adoption of mammography in women under age 50. Health Psychology, 14, 274-278.



1/13/99

Beckham

Jean Crowell Beckham

Professor in Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences

Interest in assessment and treatment of trauma, particularly as occurs for both women and men during military service; focus in treatment outcome of differential and collective contribution for psychopharmacological and behavioral interventions in PTSD populations; long term physical health effects of chronic posttraumatic stress disorder.

Rubin

David C. Rubin

Juanita M. Kreps Distinguished Professor of Psychology and Neuroscience

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My main research interest has been in long-term memory, especially for complex (or "real-world") stimuli. This work includes the study of autobiographical memory and oral traditions, as well as prose. I have also studied memory as it is more commonly done in experimental psychology laboratories using lists. In addition to this purely behavioral research, which I plan to continue, I work on memory in clinical populations with the aid of a National Institute of Mental Health grant to study PTSD and on the underlying neural basis of memory the aid of a National Institute of Aging grant to study autobiographical memory using fMRI.






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