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Medicineworld.org: Psychotherapy for post-traumatic stress disorder

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Psychotherapy for post-traumatic stress disorder




When treated within a month, survivors of a psychologically traumatic event improved significantly with psychotherapy, as per a new study presented at the American College of Neuropsychopharmacology (ACNP) annual meeting.



Psychotherapy for post-traumatic stress disorder

Lead researcher and ACNP member Arieh Shalev, M.D., Chair of the Department of Psychiatry and founding Director of the Center for Traumatic Stress at Hadassah University Hospital in Jerusalem, studied 248 adults with early symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) following a traumatic event that had occurred no more than four weeks earlier. His goal was to determine which forms of therapy given soon after the traumatic event can prevent the development of chronic PTSD. Officially, PTSD cannot be diagnosed until four weeks after a traumatic event. However, symptoms that occur before four weeks often persist, and effective early intervention may prevent subsequent trauma-related suffering.

Patients were treated for 12 weeks with cognitive treatment (which helps people change unproductive or harmful thought patterns), cognitive behavioral treatment (which helps densensitize patients upsetting reactions to traumatic memories), an antidepressant (selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor) known to be helpful in treating chronic PTSD, placebo or no intervention at all.

We observed that cognitive treatment and cognitive behavioral treatment worked well on these patients, whose symptoms and duration of PTSD were compared at the end of 3 months of intervention. At that time, their symptoms were significantly less severe than in patients who were treated with medication, placebo, or no therapy at all, Shalev says. Shalev added that eventhough antidepressants did not work during this early post-trauma period, it is important to continue exploration of pharmacological interventions for early therapy of PTSD.

Shalev says that other research suggests that both pharmacotherapy and cognitive behavioral treatment can be partially effective for PTSD when given three months or more after a traumatic event. He adds that it is important for PTSD survivors to know recovery is still possible even if therapy is not received immediately. Nevertheless, Shalev adds that his results indicate that it is best for survivors to be treated as early as possible.


Posted by: JoAnn    Source




Did you know?
When treated within a month, survivors of a psychologically traumatic event improved significantly with psychotherapy, as per a new study presented at the American College of Neuropsychopharmacology (ACNP) annual meeting. Lead researcher and ACNP member Arieh Shalev, M.D., Chair of the Department of Psychiatry and founding Director of the Center for Traumatic Stress at Hadassah University Hospital in Jerusalem, studied 248 adults with early symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) following a traumatic event that had occurred no more than four weeks earlier. His goal was to determine which forms of therapy given soon after the traumatic event can prevent the development of chronic PTSD. Officially, PTSD cannot be diagnosed until four weeks after a traumatic event. However, symptoms that occur before four weeks often persist, and effective early intervention may prevent subsequent trauma-related suffering.

Medicineworld.org: Psychotherapy for post-traumatic stress disorder

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