Occupational post-traumatic stress disorder: An updated systematic review

Wanhyung Lee, Yi Ryoung Lee, Jin Ha Yoon, Hye Ji Lee, Mo Yeol Kang

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

15 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Although numerous studies on occupational post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) have been conducted prior to the 1950-2010 seminal systematic review by Skogstad et al., the prevalence, risk factors, and impact of this disorder following traumatic events in occupational settings remain unclear. This study aims to address this knowledge gap by reviewing the literature published after 2010. Methods: We reviewed literature from databases such as PubMed and Google Scholar using PRISMA guidelines to identify studies that address occupational PTSD and examined the status (prevalence or incidence), the risk factors, and the health effects of PTSD among workers. Results: In total, 123 articles were identified, and finally, 31 (25.2%) articles were selected after excluding duplicates. Various occupational traumatic physical events were reported such as natural or manmade disaster, explosion, accident, handling refugee corpses, or bullying at work. Risk of PTSD was closely associated with working conditions, severity of injury, history of mental disorder, occurrence of psychiatric symptoms at the time of the event, personality, interpersonal relationships, etc. Workers with PTSD were likely to experience a deterioration of physical and psychological health and impairment of social and occupational functioning. Conclusions: Our review suggests that many workers remain highly vulnerable to occupational PTSD and its consequences.

Original languageEnglish
Article number768
JournalBMC Public Health
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2020 May 24

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This study was funded by the Occupational Safety and Health Research Institute in Korea (Grant Number: 2018-OSHRI-791). The funders have no role in the analysis, or interpretation of the data, writing of the article, or the decision to submit the paper for publication.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020 The Author(s).

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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