Mental health, quality of life, and health functioning in women veterans: differential outcomes associated with military and civilian sexual assault.

Research paper by Alina A Surìs, Lisa L Lind, T Michael TM Kashner, Patricia D PD Borman

Indexed on: 05 Jan '07Published on: 05 Jan '07Published in: Journal of interpersonal violence


The present study examined psychiatric, physical, and quality-of-life functioning in a sample of 270 women veterans receiving outpatient treatment at a Veterans Affairs medical center. Participants were interviewed regarding their civilian (CSA) and military sexual assault (MSA) histories, and data regarding quality of life and health outcomes were obtained through structured interviews and questionnaires. Women veterans with CSA histories reported significantly poorer physical, psychiatric, and quality-of-life functioning compared to those without a history of sexual assault. Furthermore, women veterans with an MSA history demonstrated additional negative consequences above and beyond the effects of CSA. The study sample was comparable to a national random sample of women veterans who access care in the Veterans Affairs healthcare system, increasing the generalizibility of the results.