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Salud mental

versão impressa ISSN 0185-3325


MENDOZA MOJICA, Sheila Adriana; MARQUEZ MENDOZA, Octavio; GUADARRAMA GUADARRAMA, Rosalinda  e  RAMOS LIRA, Luciana Esther. Measurement of Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) in Mexican university students. Salud Ment [online]. 2013, vol.36, n.6, pp.493-503. ISSN 0185-3325.

Nowadays violence in different aspects and contexts affects Mexico in a worrying manner. Common traumatic experiences in some communities might configure grave mental health problems in the individuals, among them posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Having scales that measure events susceptible to become traumatic as well as posttrau-matic symptomatology would allow a fast assessment before formal diagnosis, to be mainly used in epidemiological studies that enable detecting the impact of these occurrences in vulnerable people and communities. The objective of the present study was to build a scale of events and symptoms associated to PTSD in a Mexican university population, in views to obtaining its reliability and validity. A total of 858 students from four public universities of Tejupilco, State of Mexico, Mexico, took part; they were between 18 and 25 years of age, and answered the scale in its entirety. The reliability index was obtained by means of Cronbach's alpha and the validity of the construct with factorial analysis. The most frequent event was the experience of sudden death of some relative and/or a close friend. The scale as a screening instrument obtained internal consistency indexes of α=0.95 and the factorial analysis yielded five factors with a total variance of 45.15%. Its design allows associating the symptoms of the previous year to a specific life event, valued by the same subject as susceptible to become traumatic, which permits its utilization on similar populations. The vulnerability of the young student population to suffer PTSD or any other sort of psychiatric disorder from experienced events was verified. Early detection could suggest general and specialized mental health services, accompanied by actions that recognize the value of university as one of the main social spaces for youths.

Palavras-chave : Measurement; mental health; PTSD; university students; trauma.

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