The relationships of social support, rumination, posttraumatic growth, and the length of time following a combat-related amputation among Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Iraqi Freedom veterans
Bonnie B. Benetato, PhD
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As the U.S. enters its sixth year of ongoing military operations in Iraqi and Afghanistan, the U.S. is witnessing a new generation of injured veterans. Sixty-five percent of military injuries result from improvised explosive devices (IEDs) Combat-injured amputees are typically young and physically fit, and have an optimistic prognosis for having a normal life expectancy and returning to near preinjury levels of physical activity.
Posttraumatic growth (PTG) is the positive psychological change experienced as a result of the struggle with highly challenging life circumstances or crises. This study explores the relationships between and among time post amputation, social support, and rumination with PTG among Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF) and Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF) amputees using a mailed survey methodology. A sample of OEF and Off amputees ( n = 39) was obtained from 210 surveys mailed nationwide from March to July, 2007. Rumination was the only predictor variable that significantly correlated with PTG, r(37) = .48, p < 0.01. </p>
Rumination can take the form of writing, talking, journaling, or other forms of self-expression. A clinical intervention includes encouraging patients to explore the meaning of the injury. A practice recommendation for nurses working with combat-injured soldiers includes providing time for patients to describe or recount their traumatic events; to assist them explore the changes in their life goals; and to seek new opportunities.
The cross-sectional research design does not allow one to detect temporal direction or changes in PTG over time. Another limitation was the low response rate. A strength was the national scope, with surveys mailed to all known VA OEF and OIF amputees in the second quarter of FY07.
This study provides direction for additional research and may provide pilot data for a future study among OEF and OIF veterans with battle-injuries.
This dissertation has also been disseminated through the ProQuest Dissertations and Theses database. Dissertation/thesis number: 3294692; ProQuest document ID: 304667910. The author still retains copyright.
This item has not gone through this repository's peer-review process, but has been accepted by the indicated university or college in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the specified degree.
|Review Type||None: Degree-based Submission|
|Research Approach||Quantitative Research|
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