244354 Gender Differences in PTSD Symptoms among an HIV Positive Haitian Sample, within 3 months Post-Earthquake

Tuesday, November 1, 2011: 9:30 AM

Vaughn Bryant, BA , AIDS Prevention Program, Florida International University, Miami, FL
Stephanie Gaston, BA , Les Centres GHESKIO, Port-au-Prince, Haiti
Michèle Jean-Gilles, PhD , AIDS Prevention Program, Florida International University, Miami, FL
Rhonda Rosenberg, PhD , AIDS Prevention Program, Florida International University, Miami, FL
Marie-Marcelle Deschamps, MD , GHESKIO Center, Port-au-Prince, Haiti
Jessy G. Dévieux, PhD , AIDS Prevention Program, Florida International University, Miami, FL
Robert M. Malow, PhD , AIDS Prevention Program, Florida International University, Miami, FL
Background: This study examines the distribution of PTSD symptoms and diagnoses by gender among an HIV positive sample in Haiti. Methods: The sample consisted of 103 HIV positive, Haitian adults (mean age =35 years; 44 males, 59 females) from an NIAAA-funded study on HIV positive alcohol abusers which was supplemented to examine PTSD after the earthquake. The PTSD Check List – Civilian was administered to assess the level of earthquake-related traumas. A score of 50 was used as the cut-off for PTSD diagnosis, allowing for sufficient sensitivity and efficiency. Results: Approximately 59.3 % of females reported scores above the threshold for diagnosis, whereas 38.6 % of males reported scores above the threshold (Χ2(1, N = 103) = 4.31, p = .038). Gender differences were examined for each individual question using independent sample t-tests. Women reported significantly higher levels of: “repeated, disturbing dreams of the earthquake” [t(101) = -2.17, p < .05]; “ having physical reactions when something reminded you of the earthquake” [t(101) = -3.97, p < .001]; “feeling distant or cut off from other people” [t(101) = -2.1, p < .05] ; “feeling as if your future will somehow be cut short” [t(101) = -2.14, p < .05; and “feeling jumpy, or startled easily” [t(101) = -2.3, p < .05]. Conclusions: Females reported more qualifying scores for PTSD diagnosis, as well as higher levels of disturbance in the areas of: physical arousal in response to reminders of the trauma, sleep quality, psychosocial functioning and future orientation.

Learning Areas:
Administer health education strategies, interventions and programs
Chronic disease management and prevention
Planning of health education strategies, interventions, and programs
Public health or related research
Social and behavioral sciences

Learning Objectives:
1. Identify the distribution of PTSD symptomatology and qualifying diagnosis scores among a sample of HIV-positive Haitian adults. 2. Describe gender differences pertaining to specific variables and symptoms of PTSD. 3. Discuss the development of an intervention targeting adult Haitian females, which would ameliorate particular problem responses to the trauma.

Keywords: HIV/AIDS, Disasters

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: As a research associate at FIU, I have helped to develop ideas, collaborate with researchers and write/edits portions of several grant proposals including: RFA-DA-11-001 (R01) which utilizes the Seek Test Treat and Retain paradigm for HIV research; and RFA-MH-11-080: Reinvigorating HIV Prevention for Men who have Sex with Men (R01). I also, lead the writing of a grant proposal to the ABMRF Foundation for Alcohol Research: on the relationship between Molecular Genetic (NP/MG) factors that regulate Serotonin (5-HTTLPR) and Dopamine (DRD2/4) neurotransmission, varying levels of alcohol use among HIV + and HIV – subjects, and the effects of these factors on cognitive abilities. I am in the process of writing an encyclopedia article about the National Institutes of Health for the journal “Encyclopedia of Behavioral Medicine.” I have coauthored an abstract submitted to the College on Problem Drug Use and Dependence titled, “Learning and memory differences in the Dopamine receptor D2 Taq1A & C957T gene SNP among HIV-positive alcohol abusers. In addition, I have scored and analyzed Neuropsych measures related to learning and memory among HIV positive participants in “Hollistic Health Recovery Program.” I am also a coauthor on a paper published in JAIDS titled "Low Cholesterol? Don't Brag Yet... Hypocholesterolemia blunts HAART effectiveness: a longitudinal study. JAIDS; 2010 Jul 13;13:25"
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.

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