Novel study examines pre-existing predictors of post-traumatic stress symptoms in aftermath of disaster

Hurricane Katrina survivor

The Resilience in Survivors of Katrina Study (RISK) study has followed a cohort of low-income parents from a year before (baseline) exposure to Hurricane Katrina, and then 1, 4 and 12 years post disaster in order to learn more about the short- and long-term impacts. The findings of this study published in PLOS ONE contribute to the body of research on exposure to disasters by confirming that people who were…

Mental health status check of young adults in U.S. during first wave of COVID-19 pandemic

head shot of CIndy H. Liu

Harvard Pop Center faculty member Cindy H. Liu, PhD, and colleagues have published a study in Psychiatry Research that found that nearly half of the U.S. young adults (18-30) in the study showed high rates of depression and anxiety, and nearly a third showed high levels of PTSD symptoms. Family support was associated with lower levels of depression and anxiety.

Impact of traumatic events earlier in life still registers among older cohort in rural South Africa

Older man in South Africa sitting in a field

Researchers affiliated with a longitudinal study on aging in South Africa (HAALSI) have published a paper that examines the impact of traumatic events experienced earlier in the life course on cognition, and mental and physical health outcomes in an older South African population.

Does exposure to trauma explain lower rates of psychopathology among racial, ethnic minorities in the United States?

David R. Williams, a Harvard Pop Center faculty member, collaborated with a Harvard RWJF Health & Society Scholar program alumna and current Harvard faculty member Katie McLaughlin and colleagues in this study to shed light on whether exposure to trauma might be partly at play in explaining why racial and ethnic minorities have lower rates of psychopathology in the U.S.

Decreased exercise could be factor in link between PTSD and CV disease

A study published in the American Journal of Preventative Medicine reveals that women who experienced symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder were found to be less physically active over time. Harvard Pop Center faculty members Maria Glymour and Laura Kubzansky are authors on the study.

Increased risk of migraine headache linked to some PTSD symptoms following a natural disaster

Those suffering from certain symptoms of PTSD (particularly intrusion, which is the inability to keep memories of the event from returning) following a natural disaster face an increased risk for migraine headaches. Harvard Pop Center Visiting Scientist Mariana Arcaya, ScD, is lead author on the paper published in Health Psychology.  Other authors include Pop Center faculty members Mary Waters, PhD, and S V Subramanian.

Exploring PTSD Symptom Clusters and Asthma Attacks Among Hurricane Katrina Survivors

Harvard Pop Center Yerby Fellow Mariana Arcaya, ScD, and affiliated faculty members Mary C. Waters, PhD, and S.V. Subramanian, PhD, have published a study in the Journal of Traumatic Stress that examines the relationship between PTSD symptom clusters and asthma attacks among natural disaster survivors.