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The purpose of the proposed DVA cooperative study is to evaluate the efficacy of exposure therapy for treating PTSD and associated problems in female veterans and active duty military personnel. We propose to compare exposure therapy, Prolonged Exposure, with a comparison therapy that focuses on current problems, Present Centered Therapy.
The study is a randomized clinical trial involving 384 female veterans and active duty personnel in 11 VA medical centers and 1 DoD medical center. All subjects, even self-referrals, will enter the study through referrals by mental health clinicians at the participating sites. Following informed consent, subjects will be screened for inclusion and exclusion diagnoses. If they meet these criteria and agree to participate, they will be randomly assigned to one of the two treatments, which will occur weekly for 10 weeks. Subjects will be assessed before treatment, immediately following treatment, and 3 and 6 months after the end of treatment. The primary outcome is PTSD severity. Secondary outcomes are anxiety and depression. Exploratory outcomes include associated features of PTSD, such as dissociation and substance abuse; psychosocial functioning, quality of life, physical health, satisfaction with treatment, and service utilization. Both treatments will be described in detail in a treatment manual and monitored intensively to ensure that they are administered correctly.
Intervention: Patients will be randomized to one of two interventions: Prolonged Exposure (PE) consisting of 10 weekly treatment sessions that include education about and exposure to the memories of the trauma to which the patient was engaged; or Present Center Therapy (PCT), which will consist of a control therapy of the same duration that will provide emotional support for the trauma victim.
Primary Hypothesis: Prolonged Exposure (PE) will be more effective than Present-Centered Therapy (PCT) for the treatment of PTSD due to military-related trauma in women veterans. PE specifically targets PTSD symptoms, and the CAPS, our primary outcome measure. The Clinician Administered PTSD Scale (CAPS) is considered to be the gold-standard for PTSD assessment.
Secondary Hypothesis: PE will be more effective than PCT for treating the anxiety and depression that often are comorbid with PTSD.
Study Abstract: As noted in a recent report on the VA Women's Health Project, it is important to study women veterans because they are increasingly seeking VA health care. For many women veterans, Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) is a specific healthcare concern that is associated with substantial psychosocial and functional disability.
The study was proposed in response to the Research Priority Announcement on Posttraumatic Stress Disorder research issued August 1, 1997, as a study aimed a special subpopulation of VA patients with PTSD: women veterans who have been traumatized during their military service.
The first planning meeting for the study was held January 20-21, 2000 in Washington, DC. The protocol was submitted on August 1, 2000; it was reviewed and approved by the Cooperative Studies Evaluation Committee on October 10, 2000. Intake of training cases is expected to begin 01/01/2002.
Allocation: Randomized, Control: Active Control, Intervention Model: Parallel Assignment, Masking: Single Blind (Investigator), Primary Purpose: Treatment
Stress Disorders, Post-Traumatic
Prolonged Exposure, Present Centered Therapy
VA Eastern Colorado Health Care System, Denver
Department of Veterans Affairs
Published on BioPortfolio: 2014-08-27T03:56:17-0400
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