Cardiac-Disease-Induced Posttraumatic Stress Symptoms (CDI-PTSS) Among Cardiac Patients’ Partners: A Longitudinal Study

Roni Eisenberg, Keren Fait, Rachel Dekel, Nitza Levi, Hanoch Hod, Shlomi Matezki, Noa Vilchinsky

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Objective: Cardiac-disease-induced posttraumatic stress symptoms (CDI-PTSS) have been detected among a substantial number of cardiac patients. Even though patients’ caregiving partners are also susceptible to CDI-PTSS, the research on cardiac partners’ CDI-PTSS is scarce. Based on the ecological model of trauma and recovery, we investigated levels of partners’ CDI-PTSS over time, and factors that potentially contribute to it. Method: During patients’ hospitalizations, partners (N = 143) provided data regarding demographic variables and peritraumatic emotional distress (depression and anxiety). Four months later, partners’ CDI-PTSS, their emotional distress, fear of patients’ illness progression, and perceived social support were assessed. Eight months posthospitalization, partners filled out questionnaires tapping CDI-PTSS. Hypotheses were tested using structural equation modeling (SEM). Results: A mild level of CDI-PTSS was detected among partners, 4 and 8 months after patients’ cardiac event. Partners’ distress as measured during patients’ hospitalization, and their fear of patients’ illness progression, contributed to the manifestation of CDI-PTSS over time. Conclusions: The findings shed light on potential risk factors for partners’ CDI-PTSS. Interventions to ameliorate partners’ distress and fear of illness progression should be designed toward reducing the development of CDI-PTSS among partners.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)674-682
Number of pages9
JournalHealth Psychology
Issue number10
StatePublished - Oct 2022

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 American Psychological Association


  • Ace
  • Fear of illness progression
  • Partners
  • Ptsd
  • Ptss


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