To explore the salience of pre- and postmigration stresses as risk factors for posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and to identify resilience factors and explore their mental health salience.
We conducted a mental health survey of 1603 Sri Lankan Tamils in Toronto, incorporating the World Health Organization Composite International Diagnostic Interview for PTSD.
According to the International Classification of Diseases, 10th Revision, criteria, lifetime prevalence for PTSD was 12%; according to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fourth Edition, criteria it was 5.8%. Female sex and the number of stresses of passage increased the probability of PTSD, whereas satisfaction with life and the availability of nonfamily social relations reduced it.
Consideration of pre- and postmigration stresses of passage and of the nature of resilience contributes to an improved understanding of PTSD among refugees.