Childhood Trauma Predicts Psychosis, Stopping the Trauma Reduces it


In a prospective cohort study of 1,112 school-based adolescents, a study by researchers from Ireland, the U.S., Sweden and Italy found that the presence of childhood trauma (physical assault and bullying) predicted psychotic experiences. The study also found what it refers to as “the first direct evidence that cessation of traumatic experiences leads to a reduced incidence of psychotic experiences.” Results appear in July’s American Journal of Psychiatry.

Abstract →

Kelleher, I., Keeley, H., Corcoran, P., Ramsay, H., et al; Childhood Trauma and Psychosis in a Prospective Cohort Study: Cause, Effect, and Directionality. American Journal of Psychiatry, 170(5) 734-731

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Kermit Cole
Kermit Cole, MFT, founding editor of Mad in America, works in Santa Fe, New Mexico as a couples and family therapist. Inspired by Open Dialogue, he works as part of a team and consults with couples and families that have members identified as patients. His work in residential treatment — largely with severely traumatized and/or "psychotic" clients — led to an appreciation of the power and beauty of systemic philosophy and practice, as the alternative to the prevailing focus on individual pathology. A former film-maker, he has undergraduate and master's degrees in psychology from Harvard University, as well as an MFT degree from the Council for Relationships in Philadelphia. He is a doctoral candidate with the Taos Institute and the Free University of Brussels. You can reach him at [email protected].