An Examination of Family Adjustment Among Operation Desert Storm Veterans

  • Taft C
  • Schumm J
  • Panuzio J
 et al. 
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Abstract

This study examined interrelationships among combat exposure, symptoms of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and family adjustment in a sample of male and female Operation Desert Storm veterans (N = 1,512). In structural equation models for both male and female veterans, higher combat exposure was associated with higher PTSD symptoms, which in turn were associated with poorer family adjustment, although these indirect effects did not reach statistical significance. The model for female veterans evidenced a significant direct negative association between combat exposure and family adjustment when it statistically accounted for PTSD symptoms. When the relative impacts of separate PTSD symptom groupings were examined, those reflecting withdrawal/numbing symptoms and arousal/lack of control symptoms significantly and indirectly accounted for the negative effects of combat exposure on family adjustment. Study findings indicate a number of possible pathways through which war-zone deployments negatively impact military families and suggest several avenues for future research. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2016 APA, all rights reserved)

Author-supplied keywords

  • combat
  • family
  • posttraumatic stress disorder
  • veterans

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