Cookies on this website

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you click 'Accept all cookies' we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies and you won't see this message again. If you click 'Reject all non-essential cookies' only necessary cookies providing core functionality such as security, network management, and accessibility will be enabled. Click 'Find out more' for information on how to change your cookie settings.

Two studies of assault victims examined the roles of (a) disorganized trauma memories in the development of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), (b) peritraumatic cognitive processing in the development of problematic memories and PTSD, and (c) ongoing dissociation and negative appraisals of memories in maintaining symptomatology. In the cross-sectional study (n = 81), comparisons of current, past, and no-PTSD groups suggested that peritraumatic cognitive processing is related to the development of disorganized memories and PTSD. Ongoing dissociation and negative appraisals served to maintain PTSD symptoms. The prospective study (n = 73) replicated these findings longitudinally. Cognitive and memory assessments completed within 12-weeks postassault predicted 6-month symptoms. Assault severity measures explained 22% of symptom variance; measures of cognitive processing, memory disorganization, and appraisals increased prediction accuracy to 71%.


Journal article


J Consult Clin Psychol

Publication Date





419 - 431


Adult, Cognition, Female, Follow-Up Studies, Humans, Male, Memory, Prospective Studies, Retrospective Studies, Stress Disorders, Post-Traumatic, Surveys and Questionnaires, Violence