Prevalence of Post-traumatic Stress Disorder and Potentially Traumatic Events among Adolescents in Erbil City


  • Raveen Ismael Abdullah Duhok General Directorate of Health, Azadi Heart Surgery Center, Duhok, Iraq.
  • Norhan Zeki Shaker Department of Nursing, College of Nursing, Hawler Medical University, Erbil, Iraq.



Adolescent, Child Maltreatment, Post-Traumatic Stress Disorders, Students, Schools


Background and Objectives: Many children and teenagers throughout lifetime maybe ex-pose to extraordinary forms of stressful and traumatic events, particularly individuals who live in countries experiencing continuous conflicts such as Iraq. Approximately one-third of traumatized adolescents might develop symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder. The current study aimed to evaluate the types of potentially traumatic events and prevalence of post-traumatic stress disorder among adolescents in Erbil city.
Methods: A descriptive cross-sectional study was carried out at eleven public and private schools in Erbil City. The samples of the study were selected in three stages; the schools' selection, the class selection in the schools, and involvement of 300 students within the study. Data were collected from face-to-face interview of participants from 1st of March to 15th May 2018. Screening for post-traumatic stress disorder was done by using the post-traumatic stress disorder screening tool. The validity and reliability have been verified. Frequency, percentage, mean, standard deviation, chi-square, t-tests, and Fisher exact test was used for data analysis.
Results: Majority of participants were Kurdish, from the host community; More than half of them were males and middle in the rank within their families while the most prevalent potentially traumatic events were identified to be emotional abuse and physical abuse. Such events include betrayal and disappointment, witnessing parents fighting with each other, witnessing direct physical torturing, and physical torture. Among traumatized ado-lescents, it is predicted that about 41.7% have post-traumatic stress disorder.
Conclusions: Post-traumatic stress disorder is prevalent among adolescent students and it differs in terms of gender and type of schools. Post-traumatic stress disorder was found to be the highest percentage among females compared to males, and within public schools compared to private schools. The most prevalent potentially traumatic events among adolescents were emotional and physical trauma.


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How to Cite

Abdullah RI, Shaker NZ. Prevalence of Post-traumatic Stress Disorder and Potentially Traumatic Events among Adolescents in Erbil City. Erbil j. nurs. midwifery [Internet]. 2019 Jun. 1 [cited 2024 May 18];2(1):60-9. Available from:



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