Intimate Partner Violence and Mental Health Outcomes among Latinas

Project Summary

The purpose of this project is to conduct longitudinal research on the impact of past and current intimate partner violence (IPV) on mental health disparities, specifically post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), depression, and associated biomarkers, for 205 Latinas, ages 18-45. These women were identified during pregnancy as having exposure to IPV or not, and have been followed throughout the first year of their infant’s life. Information collected through the following proposed study will provide seven additional waves of data to be collected over a four year period for a total of six years. This represents a unique opportunity to accomplish an essential goal in trauma research: continue, long term follow-up of trauma survivors and serially abused victims from populations at risk for chronic PTSD, depression, and the neurobiological abnormalities associated with these disorders specifically and with chronic stress more generally. Biomarkers will collectively reflect allostatic load, a composite used to quantify cumulative effects of stress on biological systems. Biomarkers will include cortisol, norepineprhine, epinephrine, dopamine, DHEA, systolic and diastolic blood pressure and waist-to-hip ratio.

Current status: Project live