Publication Date

1-1-2011

Document Type

Dissertation/Thesis

First Advisor

Matuszewich, Leslie

Degree Name

B.S. (Bachelor of Science)

Department

Department of Psychology

Abstract

Hormones produced in the body may be important in ameliorating the effects of traumatic stress. Previous research bas shown that the concentration of several hormones, such as cortisol, dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA) and DHEA-sulfated (DHEAS) in a given individual who has been exposed to a traumatic event may be indicative of the likelihood that the individual will develop posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). The current study assessed whether higher levels of cortisol in comparison to DHEA or DHEAS could indicate a predisposition toward future mental illness following an emotionally stressful event. Female students from Northern lllinois University provided salivary samples before and following a writing task intended to induce emotional stress. The samples were analyzed for cortisol, DHEA, and DHEAS levels. Results indicated both cortisol and DHEA were reduced after the writing task, although no significant relationship between the hormones and PTSD symptoms after the stressor. The participants' levels of DHEA prior to the stressor seemed to be predictive of PTSD symptom presence after the stressor.

Extent

23 pages

Language

eng

Publisher

Northern Illinois University

Rights Statement

In Copyright

Rights Statement 2

NIU theses are protected by copyright. They may be viewed from Huskie Commons for any purpose, but reproduction or distribution in any format is prohibited without the written permission of the authors.

Media Type

Text

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