Posttraumatic growth among suicide-loss survivors : an updated systematic review and meta-analysis protocol

Whittaker, Spence and Rasmussen, Susan and Cogan, Nicola and Tse, Dwight C. K. and Martin, Bethany and Andriessen, Karl and Shiramizu, Victor and Krysinska, Karolina and Levi-Belz, Yossi (2024) Posttraumatic growth among suicide-loss survivors : an updated systematic review and meta-analysis protocol. Other. PsyArXiv, Charlottesville, VA. (

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Background: Losing a loved one to suicide is an event which can have strong and potentially traumatic impacts on the lives of the bereaved survivors, especially regarding their grief which can be complicated. These bereaved individuals are also less likely to receive social support following their bereavement. However, besides these adverse impacts, there is growing evidence to support the concept of posttraumatic growth following suicide bereavement. Posttraumatic growth is personal improvement that occurs as a consequence of experiencing a traumatic or extremely challenging event or crisis. Only one systematic review and meta-analysis on posttraumatic growth following suicide bereavement has been conducted; this protocol is for the planned systematic review and meta-analysis update of the original systematic review and meta-analysis, as the original review collected its data in 2018.Method: This protocol outlines the planned procedures of the updated systematic review and meta-analysis. This review and its protocol have been registered with PROSPERO(Registration Number: CRD42024485421). MEDLINE, PsycINFO, Embase, CINAHL, Scopus, and Web of Science (Core Collection) will be examined, and the search results will be imported to Covidence where title and abstract screenings, full text screenings, and data extraction will occur. The inclusion and exclusion criteria for this updated review match those in the original review: i) the study population must contain participants bereaved by suicide, ii) the study data must be quantitative, iii) the study must report data on posttraumatic or stress-related growth. The original review conducted its search prior to 2019; thus, this updated review searched databases for the timeframe of January 2019 to January 2024. The updated meta-analysis will synthesise data from both the original and updated reviews to examine trends over time. Discussion: The results of this updated systematic review and meta-analysis will be used to examine key relationships and findings regarding posttraumatic growth in individuals bereaved by suicide. The discussion will also investigate the findings of this updated review in comparison to the findings of the original review. Any differences would be highlighted.