Numerous studies have identified risk factors for acute and long-term posttraumatic stress symptoms following traumatic exposure. However, little is known about whether there are common pathways to the development of acute stress disorder (ASD) and posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Research suggests that a common path to ASD and PTSD may lie in peritraumatic responses and cognitions. The results of structural equation modeling in a national sample of Danish bank robbery victims (N = 450) show that peritraumatic panic, anxiety sensitivity, and negative cognitions about self were significant common risk factors for both ASD severity and PTSD severity when controlled for the effect of the other risk factors. The strongest common risk factor was negative cognitions about self. Future research should focus on replicating these results as they point to possible areas of preventive and treatment actions against the development of traumatic stress symptoms.
- Acute stress disorder
- Posttraumatic stress disorder
- Common pathways
- Risk factors
- Bank robbery