Validation of the Injured Trauma Survivor Screen: An American Association for the Surgery of Trauma multi-institutional trial

Joshua C. Hunt, Erick Herrera-Hernandez, Amber Brandolino, Kelley Jazinski-Chambers, Kathryn Maher, Brianna Jackson, Randi N. Smith, Diane Lape, Mackenzie Cook, Carisa Bergner, Andrew T. Schramm, Karen J. Brasel, Marc A. De Moya, Terri A. Deroon-Cassini

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


Background: Psychological distress is common following a traumatic injury event. The Injured Trauma Survivor Screen (ITSS) was developed at a level 1 trauma center to assess for posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and major depressive episode (MDE) following admission for a traumatic injury. The ITSS sensitivity and specificity were analyzed 1 to 3 and 6 to 9 months postinjury to test the validity across trauma centers. METHOD Four level 1 trauma centers from the East, Midwest, South, and West in the United States recruited 375 eligible adult inpatients (excluded participants included those with moderate or severe traumatic brain injury, whose injury was self-inflicted, were noncommunicative, or were non-English speaking). Baseline sample (White/Caucasian, 63.2%; male, 62.4%; mean (SD) age, 45 (17.11) years; injured by motor vehicle collision, 42.4%) measurements were conducted during index hospitalization. At first follow-up, 69.6% (n = 261) were retained; at second follow-up, 61.3% (n = 230) were retained. Measurements included the ITSS, PTSD Checklist for DSM-5, Center for Epidemiologic Studies Depression Scale - Revised, and Clinician-Administered PTSD Scaled for DSM 5. Results: At follow-up 1, the ITSS PTSD subscale had a sensitivity of 75% and specificity of 78.8%, and the MDE subscale had a sensitivity of 80.4% and specificity of 65.6%. At follow-up 2, the PTSD subscale had a sensitivity of 72.7% and specificity of 83.1%, and the MDE subscale had a sensitivity of 76.1% and specificity of 68.3%. A combined risk group using two symptom based measures administered at baseline produced increased specificity. Conclusion: The nine-item ITSS continues to be an efficient and effective risk screen for PTSD and MDE following traumatic injury requiring hospitalization. This multi-institutional validation study creates a solid foundation for further exploration of the generalizability of this screen's psychometric properties in distinct populations.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)797-806
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Trauma and Acute Care Surgery
Issue number5
StatePublished - 2021


  • Depression
  • PTSD
  • Screen
  • Trauma centers
  • Traumatic injury

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Critical Care and Intensive Care Medicine


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