Compassion Fatigue focuses on those individuals who provide therapy to victims of PTSD - crisis and trauma counselors, Red Cross workers, nurses, doctors, and other caregivers who themselves often become victim to secondary traumatic stress disorder (STSD) or "compassion fatigue" as a result of helping or wanting to help a traumatized person.
Edited by Charles R. Figley, a renowned pioneer in the field of traumatic stress studies, this book consists of eleven chapters, each written by a different specialist in the field. It addresses such questions as: What are compassion stress and compassion fatigue? What are the unintended, and often unexpected, deleterious effects of providing help to traumatized people? What are some examples of cases in which individuals were traumatized by helping, and how were they traumatized? What are the characteristics of the traumatized caregiver (e.g., race, gender, ethnicity, age, interpersonal competence, experience with psychological trauma) that account for the development, sustenance, preventability, and treatability of secondary traumatization? Is there a way to theoretically account for all these factors? What are the characteristics of effective programs to prevent or ameliorate compassion stress and its unwanted consequences?