Posttraumatic stress symptoms, PTSD, and risk factors among lower Manhattan residents 2-3 years after the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks
Manhattan residents living near the World Trade Center may have been particularly vulnerable to posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) after the September 11, 2001 (9/11) terrorist attacks. In 2003-2004, the authors administered the PTSD Checklist to 11,037 adults who lived south of Canal Street in New York City on 9/11. The prevalence of probable PTSD was 12.6% and associated with older age, female gender, Hispanic ethnicity, low education and income, and divorce. Injury, witnessing horror, and dust cloud exposure on 9/11 increased risk for chronic PTSD. Postdisaster risk factors included evacuation and rescue and recovery work. The results indicate that PTSD is a continued health problem in the local community. The relationship between socioeconomic status and PTSD suggests services must target marginalized populations. Followup is necessary on the course and long-term consequences of PTSD.