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Prolonged grief and post-traumatic growth after loss: Latent class analysis

Journal title
Psychiatry research
Publication year
Zhou, N.; Yu, W.; Tang, S.; Wang, J.; Killikelly, C.

Bereavement may trigger different psychological outcomes, such as prolonged grief disorder or post-traumatic growth. The relationship between these two outcomes and potential precipitators remain unknown. The current study aimed to identify classes of Chinese bereaved individuals based on prolonged grief symptoms and post-traumatic growth and to examine predictors for these classes. We used data from 273 Chinese individuals who lost a relative due to disease (92.3%), accident (4.4%) and other reasons (1.8%). Latent class analysis revealed three classes: a resilient class, a growth class, and a combined grief/growth class. A higher level of functional impairment was found for the combined grief/growth class than for the other two classes. Membership in the combined grief/growth class was significantly predicted by the younger age of the deceased and the death of a parent, child or spouse. Subjective closeness with the deceased and gender were marginally significant predictors. When the four variables were included in the multinomial regression analysis, death of a parent, child or spouse significantly predicted the membership to the combined grief/growth class. These findings provide valuable information for the development of tailored interventions that may build on the bereaved individuals’ personal strengths.

Research abstracts