The authors examined interrelationships among posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptomatology, anger, and partner abuse perpetration among a sample of 60 combat veterans. Compared with PTSD-negative participants, PTSD-positive participants reported higher state anger across time and neutral and trauma prime conditions and higher anger reactivity during the trauma prime condition. PTSD-positive participants also exhibited more anger reactivity during the trauma prime than during the neutral condition. The same pattern of results was not found for anxiety reactivity during trauma memory activation. PTSD symptoms were associated with physical assault and psychological aggression perpetration, and trait anger mediated these relationships. Findings indicate a heightened anger response among PTSD-positive veterans and suggest the salience of dispositional components of anger in abuse perpetration in this population.
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