Academic journal article Journal of Psychology and Theology

Journal of Religion and Health

Academic journal article Journal of Psychology and Theology

Journal of Religion and Health

Article excerpt

Mihaljevic, S., Vuksan-Cusa, B., Marcinko, D., Koic, E., Kusevic, Z., and Jakovljevic, M.

Spiritual Well-Being, Cortisol, and Suicidality in Croatian War Veterans Suffering from PTSD

Vol. 50,464-473 (2011)

Research has found increased levels of cortisol among individuals experiencing chronic stress or with psychiatric disorders associated with stress. Moreover, due its connection to stress, cortisol levels have been proven useful in predicting patients at risk of suicide. Other research has shown that individuals with high levels of spiritual and religious well-being may experience increased protection against the stress-related effects of the neuroendocrine hormones. Seeking to add to the current volume of research on cortisol, suicidality, and spiritual well-being, Mihaljevic et al. (2011) sought to "observe the relationship of cortisol secretion with suicidal risk and the level of spiritual well-being" in Croatian war veterans with PTSD (p. 465).

Twenty-three Croatian male war veterans from the Department of Psychiatry at the University Hospital of Zagreb were initially selected for participation in this study. Participants were interviewed to confirm the presence of DSM-IV-TR criteria for PTSD and to rule out any sequelae of childhood trauma. Three participants were excluded from the study due to the presence of somatic illnesses and three dropped out due to their fear of the venipuncture that would be a part of the study. In addition to the experimental PTSD group (n = 17), a comparison group of "healthy volunteers" with no prior psychiatric illnesses or war exposure were included. Three measures were utilized in the study. The Beck Hopelessness Scale, a 20-item self-report inventory, was used to measure levels of suicidality. This scale measures three major aspects of hopelessness, including feelings about the future, loss of motivation, and expectations. Spirituality was measured using the Spiritual Well-Being Scale, a 20-item self-report measure that assesses religious well-being and existential well-being. Religious well-being refers to one's sense of relation to God, while existential well-being refers to one's sense of satisfaction and purpose in life. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.