Psychological outcomes after pediatric hospitalization: the role of trauma type

Maya G. Meentken, Jan van der Ende, Riwka del Canho, Ingrid M. van Beynum, Elisabeth W.C. Aendekerk, Jeroen S. Legerstee, Ramón J.L. Lindauer, Manon H.J. Hillegers, Willem A. Helbing, Henriette A. Moll, Elisabeth M.W.J. Utens*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)
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Physical injury and illness are common potentially traumatic events during childhood and adolescence. Many children experience psychosocial difficulties after medical events. The sample consisted of 399 children aged 4 to 15 who had been hospitalized for physical illness or injury. Elevated psychological symptomatology (PTSS, depression, anxiety) was more frequent after multiple (type II) compared to single (type I) medical events, but only a few differences were statistically significant. The strongest risk factor of child PTSS was parental stress. Type II trauma and low parental education were significant risk factors only for parent report of child PTSS (not for child report). The analyzed risk factors did not differ for type I versus II trauma. We recommend standardized screening and monitoring for mental health in the standard pediatric health care. Furthermore, pediatricians should be trained in signaling stress signs of parents.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)278-292
Number of pages15
JournalChildren's Health Care
Issue number3
Early online date16 Mar 2021
Publication statusPublished - 2021

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported by Innovatiefonds Zorgverzekeraars, Stichting Hartekind, and Vereniging EMDR Nederland. We gratefully acknowledge the co-operation of all patients who participated in the study. Furthermore, we acknowledge Suzanne Hofman & Linda Bot from the Maasstad hospital, the Dutch Association for patients with congenital heart defect (Patiëntenvereniging Aangeboren Hartafwijkingen; PAH), and Zina Fejzic, MD from the Radboud UMC (pediatric cardiology) for their efforts in recruiting participants.

Publisher Copyright: © 2021 The Author(s). Published with license by Taylor & Francis Group, LLC.


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