Psychological assessment, diagnosis, and treatment of torture survivors: a review

Clin Psychol Rev. 2007 Jun;27(5):628-41. doi: 10.1016/j.cpr.2007.02.003. Epub 2007 Feb 7.


While reliable estimates of the worldwide prevalence of torture are difficult to obtain, reports from human rights groups such as Amnesty International suggest that instances of torture are reaching near epidemic levels. Torture is a human behavioral phenomenon that is critically understudied, and the effects of torture may trickle down into future generations of the victim. The current paper discusses the psychological assessment, diagnosis, and treatment of torture victims, reasons for studying the sequelae of torture, and attempts to address how psychologists can become more involved.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Culture
  • Humans
  • Mental Health Services / statistics & numerical data
  • Stress Disorders, Post-Traumatic* / diagnosis
  • Stress Disorders, Post-Traumatic* / etiology
  • Stress Disorders, Post-Traumatic* / therapy
  • Survivors / psychology*
  • Torture / psychology*