Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is one of the most common psychological consequences for adult road traffic crash (RTC) survivors and can have serious and long-lasting consequences for recovery if left untreated. Prevalence rates of PTSD following a RTC vary from 6% to 45% (based on 51 prevalence estimates across 35 studies). Explanations for this wide variance are explored. A systematic review of published studies found 49 papers (44 unique studies) investigating predictors of later PTSD in RTC survivors. Consistent predictors of PTSD include rumination about the trauma, perceived threat to life, a lack of social support, higher Acute Stress Disorder symptom severity, persistent physical problems, previous emotional problems, previous anxiety disorder and involvement in litigation/compensation. Moderate predictors of PTSD are discussed, as well as factors, which consistently do not predict PTSD in RTC survivors. The results inform future models of post-RTC traumatic stress aetiology.
Keywords: PTSD; Posttraumatic stress disorder; Predictors; Prevalence; Road traffic crash.
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