Prevalence and victimization correlates of pathological dissociation in a community sample of youths

J Trauma Stress. 2006 Aug;19(4):439-48. doi: 10.1002/jts.20144.


This study explored the relationships among a variety of victimization experiences and dissociative symptoms in a community probabilistic household sample (n=891) of youths (11-17 years old) in Puerto Rico. To measure dissociative symptoms, the authors selected eight items from the Adolescent Dissociative Experiences Scale (Armstrong, Putnam, Carlson, Liber, & Smith, 1997) that are indicative of pathological forms of dissociation. Victimization factors associated with dissociation were investigated with bivariate logistic regression followed by multiple logistic regression. The results indicated that 44 (4.9%) youths experienced pathological dissociative symptoms. Forty-three (98%) of those youths experienced victimization. Logistic regression analyses indicated that the risk of pathological dissociation was significant among those participants who reported severe forms of physical abuse and those who were exposed to violence.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Child
  • Child Abuse / psychology*
  • Child Abuse / statistics & numerical data
  • Dissociative Disorders / epidemiology*
  • Dissociative Disorders / etiology
  • Dissociative Disorders / psychology
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Logistic Models
  • Male
  • Multivariate Analysis
  • Prevalence
  • Puerto Rico / epidemiology
  • Risk Factors
  • Violence / psychology*
  • Violence / statistics & numerical data