Author(s): vanDijke A, Ford JD, Frank LE, van der Hart O
This study replicates and extends prior research on the relationship of childhood complex trauma (CCT) and complex posttraumatic stress disorder (cPTSD) in adulthood, examining the role of psychoform and somatoform dissociation as a potential mediator. CCT, dissociation, and cPTSD were assessed in a large sample of adult psychiatric inpatients. Almost two thirds of participants reported having experienced CCT. Path analyses with bootstrap confidence intervals demonstrated a relationship between CCT, psychoform (but not somatoform) dissociation, and cPTSD. In addition, psychoform dissociation partially mediated the relationship between CCT and adult cPTSD symptoms. Dissociation (pathological or nonpathological psychoform and somatoform symptoms) warrants further clinical and scientific study as a potential link between CCT and the presence of adult cPTSD symptoms and/or the dissociative subtype of PTSD.