Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder in Displaced Population of Sindhupalchowk Following Earthquake

  • Pratik Yonjan Lama Department of Psychiatry and Mental Health, Maharajgunj Medical Campus, Tribhuvan University Teaching Hospital, Maharajgunj, Kathmandu, Nepal
  • Saroj Prasad Ojha
  • Manisha Chapagai
  • Pratikchhya Tulachan
  • Saraswati Dhungana

Abstract

Introduction: The April 2015 Nepal earthquake with its epicenter at east of Gorkha occurred with a magnitude of 7.8Mw. Sindhupalchowk was one of the worst affected districts. Apart from the physical damage after the earthquake, the survivors of the earthquake also experienced stress and emotional reactions .The purpose of this study was to estimate the prevalence of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and identify the factors associated with it.

Methods: This cross-sectional study included a convenience sample of 203 survivors, displaced from Phulpingkatti Village Development Committee (VDC) of Sindhupalchowk to Kathmandu. Participants were interviewed 7-9 months after the earthquake by means of structured interview, PTSD Check List-5 (PCL-5), and Brief Resilience Scale (BRS). Logistic regression analysis was used to examine the association of PTSD with the demographics, trauma exposure and resilience.

Results: The prevalence of PTSD among survivors was 40.4%. Factors significantly associated with PTSD included resilience [odds ratio (OR) 26.32; 95% confidence interval (CI), 11.04-62.75], older age (OR, 12.29; 95% CI, 5.08-29.752), female (OR, 2.285; 95% CI, 1.25-4.16), illiteracy (OR, 11.1; 95% CI, 5.09-24.17), someone being injured or missing or dead (OR, 2.22; 95% CI, 1.22-4.03), own life being in danger (OR, 2.8; 95% CI, 1.20-6.35), and perceived help (OR, 2.13; 95% CI, 1.01-4.91).

Conclusion: PTSD is common among the survivors of earthquake. Resilience, old age, illiteracy, female, someone or self being injured, life being in danger and lack of perceived help are associated with risk of developing PTSD. Therefore, psychological aid and social support must be provided to the vulnerable population.

Keywords

 Earthquake, Nepal, posttraumatic stress disorder, resilience

 

Published
2020-02-11