This study examined child development in relation to post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) after hurricane exposure. The study subjects were 175 3 to 5-year old minority children enrolled in Head Start programs. Children were evaluated 12 and 18 months after Hurricane Andrew struck south Florida. Mothers were interviewed concerning symptoms of PTSD and completed a questionnaire regarding their children's development. Results indicated that 16.5% of exposed children met DSM-IV diagnostic criteria for PTSD at 12 months, and 11.6% had PTSD at 18 months post-hurricane. Children who had PTSD at 12 months were more likely to be delayed in their development at 18 months, and those with PTSD at 18 months similarly were more likely to be delayed. These findings indicate that children with PTSD are at risk for delays in their overall development.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Emergency Medicine
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health