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Psychological processes mediating the association between developmental trauma and specific psychotic symptoms in adults: a systematic review and meta-analysis

Bloomfield, MAP; Chang, T; Woodl, MJ; Lyons, LM; Cheng, Z; Bauer-Staeb, C; Hobbs, C; ... Lewis, G; + view all (2021) Psychological processes mediating the association between developmental trauma and specific psychotic symptoms in adults: a systematic review and meta-analysis. World Psychiatry , 20 (1) pp. 107-123. 10.1002/wps.20841.

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Abstract

Experiencing psychological trauma during childhood and/or adolescence is associated with an increased risk of psychosis in adulthood. However, we lack a clear knowledge of how developmental trauma induces vulnerability to psychotic symptoms. Understanding the psychological processes involved in this association is crucial to the development of preventive interventions and improved treatments. We sought to systematically review the literature and combine findings using meta‐analytic techniques to establish the potential roles of psychological processes in the associations between developmental trauma and specific psychotic experiences (i.e., hallucinations, delusions and paranoia). Twenty‐two studies met our inclusion criteria. We found mediating roles of dissociation, emotional dysregulation and post‐traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptoms (avoidance, numbing and hyperarousal) between developmental trauma and hallucinations. There was also evidence of a mediating role of negative schemata, i.e. mental constructs of meanings, between developmental trauma and delusions as well as paranoia. Many studies to date have been of poor quality, and the field is limited by mostly cross‐sectional research. Our findings suggest that there may be distinct psy­chological pathways from developmental trauma to psychotic phenomena in adulthood. Clinicians should carefully ask people with psychosis about their history of developmental trauma, and screen patients with such a history for dissociation, emotional dysregulation and PTSD symptoms. Well conducted research with prospective designs, including neurocognitive assessment, is required in order to fully understand the biopsychosocial mechanisms underlying the association between developmental trauma and psychosis.

Type: Article
Title: Psychological processes mediating the association between developmental trauma and specific psychotic symptoms in adults: a systematic review and meta-analysis
DOI: 10.1002/wps.20841
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1002/wps.20841
Language: English
Additional information: This version is the author accepted manuscript. For information on re-use, please refer to the publisher’s terms and conditions.
Keywords: Developmental trauma, psychotic symptoms, childhood, adolescence, delusions, hallucinations, paranoia, post-traumatic stress disorder, dissociation, psychological processes
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > Div of Psychology and Lang Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > Div of Psychology and Lang Sciences > Clinical, Edu and Hlth Psychology
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > Division of Psychiatry
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10120990
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