Trauma exposure and posttraumatic stress disorder among incarcerated men

Nancy Wolff, Jessica Huening, Jing Shi, B. Christopher Frueh

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

53 Scopus citations


Trauma exposure and trauma-related symptoms are prevalent among incarcerated men, suggesting a need for behavioral health intervention. A random sample of adult males (N=592) residing in a single high-security prison were screened for trauma exposure and posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptoms. Trauma was a universal experience among incarcerated men. Rates of current PTSD symptoms and lifetime PTSD were significantly higher (30 to 60 %) than rates found in the general male populations (3 to 6 %). Lifetime rates of trauma and PTSD were associated with psychiatric disorders. This study suggests the need for a gender-sensitive response to trauma among incarcerated men with modification for comorbid mental disorders and type of trauma exposure. Developing gender-sensitive trauma interventions for incarcerated men and testing them is necessary to improve the behavioral health outcomes of incarcerated men who disproportionately return to urban communities.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)707-719
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Urban Health
Issue number4
StatePublished - Aug 2014


  • Incarcerated men
  • Integrated treatment
  • PTSD
  • Trauma

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • Urban Studies
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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