This study evaluated the association between perception of controllability and the development of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) following criminal assault. Factor analysis of a perceived controllability scale revealed three factors; perceived controllability felt during the assault, expected controllability over future assaults, and perceived controllability over aversive events more generally. Only the latter factor was associated with PTSD symptom severity. The hypothesis that perceived controllability would be negatively associated with assault severity was partially supported. Further analyses showed that the association between controllability and PTSD was not mediated or moderated by assault severity measures. The role of perceived controllability in the development of PTSD is discussed.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
AcknoM,i~~~~enlents-Thisst udy was supported in part by the National Institute of Mental Health Grant No. MH42178 awarded to the third author and the National Cancer Institute Grant No. CA46591 and the American Cancer Society Grants Nos PBR-71 and PBR-72 awarded to the fourth author. Its contents are solely the responsibility of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official views of the National Cancer Institute.