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Protocol - Trauma and Adversity Exposure - General

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Description:

The Life Events Checklist (LEC-5) for The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition (DSM-5) is a self-report measure designed to screen for potentially traumatic events in a respondent’s lifetime. The sum of endorsements can be used as a variable for analysis, but the LEC-5 typically is used to facilitate identification of an index trauma for assessment of PTSD symptoms with an instrument such as the Clinician-Administered PTSD Scale (CAPS; see PTSD Symptoms, Severity and Diagnosis measure in the PhenX Toolkit). The LEC-5 assesses exposure to 16 event categories with known potential to result in significant distress and PTSD, and it includes an additional item addressing any other extraordinarily stressful events not captured by the 16 categories. For each item, the respondent selects: Happened to me; Witnessed it; Learned about it; Part of my job; Not sure; or Doesn’t apply. These options reflect DSM-based modalities of trauma exposure. LEC-5 quantifies types of exposures but does not address features (such as age at onset and perpetrator) or parameters (such as severity, frequency, and duration). Such information is provided in the PhenX Toolkit with the Lifetime Trauma and Victimization History (LTVH) measure.

Protocol:

Summary of the Life Events Checklist for DSM-5 (LEC-5)

The LEC-5 assesses exposure to 17 event types with known potential to result in significant distress or PTSD. These events include:

  • Natural disaster
  • Fire/explosion
  • Accident at work, home, recreation, or during transportation
  • Exposure to toxic substance
  • Assault
  • Sexual assault or unwanted sexual experience
  • Combat experience
  • Captivity
  • Illness, injury, or human suffering
  • Sudden violent or accidental death
  • Harm caused by participant
  • Other stressful event

For each item, the respondent checks: Happened to me; Witnessed it; Learned about it; Part of my job; Not sure; or Doesn’t apply.

Scoring:

The LEC-5 generates:

  • Number of events experienced
  • Number of events witnessed
  • Number of events learned about

Endorsements of potentially traumatic events are used to facilitate identification of an index trauma for a semi-structured PTSD interview such as the Clinician-Administered PTSD scale (CAPS-see PTSD Symptoms, Severity and Diagnosis measure in the PhenX Toolkit).

Availability:

The Life Events Checklist for DSM-5 (LEC-5) is available for download from the National Center for PTSD at www.ptsd.va.gov.

Protocol Name from Source:

This section will be completed when reviewed by an Expert Review Panel.

Availability:

Publicly available

Personnel and Training Required

None

Equipment Needs

None

Requirements
Requirement CategoryRequired
Major equipment No
Specialized training No
Specialized requirements for biospecimen collection No
Average time of greater than 15 minutes in an unaffected individual No
Mode of Administration

Self-administered questionnaire

Life Stage:

Adult

Participants:

Adults, ages 18 and older

Specific Instructions:

The Life Events Checklist (LEC-5) for The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition (DSM-5) establishes exposure to categories of potentially traumatic events typically encountered by the general population. The LEC-5 was developed to be administered before the Clinician-Administered PTSD Scale (CAPS; see PTSD Symptoms, Severity and Diagnosis). Endorsements can be summed, but individual items are often used to guide follow-up questioning about specific experiences as part of a semistructured PTSD interview.

For assessment of potentially traumatic events related to military service, see the four subscales from the Deployment Risk and Resilience Inventory-2 (DRRI-2)

Selection Rationale

The Life Events Checklist (LEC-5) for The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition (DSM-5) is a widely used, brief, self-report measure with indirectly established psychometric properties based on its similarity to Life Events Checklist (LEC-IV) for The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition (DSM-IV).

Language

English

Standards
StandardNameIDSource
Common Data Elements (CDE) Trauma and Adversity Exposure Questionnaire Score 4588654 CDE Browser
Process and Review

This section will be completed when reviewed by an Expert Review Panel.

Source

Weathers, F. W., Blake, D. D., Schnurr, P. P., Kaloupek, D. G., Marx, B. P., & Keane, T. M. (2013). The Life Events Checklist for DSM-5 (LEC-5). Instrument available from the National Center for PTSD at www.ptsd.va.gov.

General References

Elhai, J. D., Gray, M. J., Kashdan, T. B., & Franklin, C. L. (2005). Which instruments are most commonly used to assess traumatic event exposure and post-traumatic effects? A survey of traumatic stress professionals. Journal of Traumatic Stress, 18(5), 541-545.

Gray, M. J., Litz, B. T., Hsu, J. L., & Lombardo, T. W. (2004). Psychometric properties of the life events checklist. Assessment, 11(4), 330-341.

Kaloupek, D. G., Chard, K. M., Freed, M. C., Peterson, A. L., Riggs, D. S., Stein, M. B., & Tuma, F. (2010). Common data elements for posttraumatic stress disorder research. Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, 91(11), 1684-1691.

Protocol ID:

630101

Variables:
Export Variables
Variable NameVariable IDVariable DescriptionVersiondbGaP Mapping
PX630101000000 Protocol 630101 - proprietary. Check DCW for contact 4 N/A
Research Domain Information
Measure Name:

Trauma and Adversity Exposure

Release Date:

November 21, 2014

Definition

A questionnaire to assess the participant’s exposure to potentially traumatic events (PTEs).

Purpose

This measure is used to document exposure to potentially traumatic events (PTEs) that have sufficient characteristics (e.g., magnitude, proximity) to trigger a debilitating stress reaction and also to adversity that may amplify impact or impede recovery. Exposure to PTEs is associated with psychological and emotional distress, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), depression, and substance abuse and also with increased use of health care services.

This measure includes two protocols. One protocol is used to screen the general population for lifetime exposure to PTEs. Cumulative exposure is associated with increased likelihood of developing PTSD after a new traumatic event. The other protocol is used to screen military populations for exposure to PTEs in a warzone or combat setting. Potentially traumatic exposures are common for military personnel in combat.

Keywords

Trauma, Potentially traumatic event, Stress, Stressor, Post-traumatic Stress Disorder, PTSD