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Complicated grief in Bosnian refugees: Associations with PTSD and depression following ethnic Cleansing.

Dr Shakeh Momartin

Research indicates that most survivors of genocide or ethnic cleansing experience long-lasting existential, psychological and physical sequelae. Clinicians often refer to these consequences as symptoms of PTSD, although it is more complicated than a clear-cut diagnosis. Dr Momartin will address a study that was conducted with a group of Bosnian refugees. The results confirm that ‘threat to life’ was a strong predictor of PTSD status; a finding that is supported by the DSM-IV definition of trauma. Also, both ‘threat to life’ and ‘traumatic loss’ were shown to contribute to symptom severity and disability associated with PTSD. A second research study indicated that although the presentation of PTSD symptoms are common in survivors of atrocities, the specific pattern of ‘threat to life’ leading to PTSD differed from that of grief which, was postulated, would be closely linked with traumatic loss, producing ‘complicated grief’. The findings have implications for the transgenerational transmission of trauma and future studies of genocide & ethnic cleansing.

Recorded at the NSW Service for the Treatment and Rehabilitation of Torture and Trauma Survivors (STARTTS)
28 September 2011, New South Wales, Australia.
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Shakeh Momartin
Shakeh Momartin
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VideoComplicated grief in Bosnian refugees: Associations with PTSD and depression following ethnic Cleansing.Shakeh Momartin20'47"
icon pdf.gifComplicated grief in Bosnian refugees: Associations with PTSD and depression following ethnic Cleansing.Shakeh Momartin 
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Dr Shakeh Momartin

Dr Shakeh Momartin is a registered Clinical Psychologist. She holds a Masters of Clinical Psychology from Macquarie University and PhD from the University of Sydney. She has vast clinical experience in the area of general psychopathology and extensive experience in comprehensive assessment, research and treatment of people from refugee and asylum seeker backgrounds.
She is a reviewer and assessor for several international clinical journals and universities. She is currently employed as a Clinical Psychologist and Researcher at STARTTS.

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