Rates and consequences of posttraumatic distress among American Indian adults with type 2 diabetes

Benjamin D. Aronson, Laura C Palombi, Melissa L Walls

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


This study examined the prevalence of screened posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and associated diabetes-related outcomes. A sample of American Indian adults with type 2 diabetes (n = 218) participated in interviewer-administered surveys. Using a cutoff of 3 on the Primary Care PTSD screener, 21.8 % of participants screened positive for PTSD. PTSD symptoms were negatively associated with self-rated health status and positively associated with past year hospitalization after controlling for several demographic factors, but not after controlling for depressive symptoms. Past month frequency of hyperglycemia symptoms was not related to PTSD symptoms. When grouped by mental health conditions (neither screened PTSD nor depressive symptoms, screened PTSD only, depressive symptoms only, and both), those with both screened PTSD and depressive symptoms reported the highest proportion of any past month hyperglycemia, past year hospitalization, and low self-rated health status. Screened PTSD, especially in those with comorbid depressive symptoms, is an important consideration in diabetes care.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)694-703
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Behavioral Medicine
Issue number4
StatePublished - Aug 1 2016

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Research reported in this paper was supported by the National Institute of Mental Health under Award Number MH085852 (M. Walls, Principal Investigator). The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the National Institutes of Health. Dr. Aronson gratefully acknowledges support from an American Foundation for Pharmaceutical Education Fellowship and a Health Services Dissertation Award (R36) from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (1R36HS024180-01).

Publisher Copyright:
© 2016, Springer Science+Business Media New York.


  • American Indian
  • Depression
  • Disease outcomes
  • Posttraumatic stress disorder
  • Trauma
  • Type 2 diabetes


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