Navigation Links
Preventing posttraumatic stress disorder by facing trauma memories
Date:11/27/2012

Philadelphia, PA, November 27, 2012 Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a form of learning that begins at the moment of the exposure to extremely stressful situations and that grows in impact as trauma-related memories are rehearsed and strengthened repeatedly. This somewhat oversimplified view of PTSD yields a powerful prediction: if one could disrupt the rehearsal and strengthening of traumatic memories, a process called reconsolidation of memories, then one might reduce PTSD risk or PTSD severity after potentially traumatic events.

To be certain, it is tricky to attempt to alter traumatic memory reconsolidation. In fact, some early strategies for "trauma debriefing" turned out to strengthen rather than diminish posttraumatic learning.

Despite these challenges, a new study by Dr. Barbara Rothbaum and colleagues reports that a behavioral intervention delivered to patients immediately post-trauma is effective at reducing posttraumatic stress reactions.

"PTSD is a major public health concern," said Rothbaum, professor in Emory's Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences. "In so many people, what happens immediately after a traumatic event can make things worse or better. Right now, there are no accepted interventions delivered in the immediate aftermath of trauma."

To conduct the study, the researchers approached patients who presented to the local emergency room due to a traumatic event, including rape, car accident, or physical assault. Half of those who agreed to participate received the behavioral intervention, which was started immediately, while the other half did not. All patients were repeatedly assessed for symptoms of depression and stress over a twelve-week period.

The intervention is a modified form of exposure therapy in which a survivor confronts anxiety about a traumatic event by recounting it. Administered over the course of 3 1-hour sessions, the goal is to alter the person's thoughts and feelings about the traumatic event. Trained therapists asked the participants to describe the trauma they just experienced and recorded the description. The patients were instructed to listen to their recordings every day. The therapists also helped the patients look at obtrusive thoughts of guilt or responsibility, and taught them a brief breathing relaxation technique and self care.

They found that the intervention was safe, feasible, and successful at reducing posttraumatic stress reactions, compared to those who were assigned to the assessment-only condition, at 4 and 12 weeks post-injury.

"This study provides an elegant and clinically important test of the trauma reconsolidation hypothesis," commented Dr. John Krystal, editor of Biological Psychiatry.

The implications of this study are immense, Rothbaum explained. "If we know what to do, then we can train emergency workers to intervene with patients on a large scale. In addition to being implemented in the emergency room, it can help on the battlefield, in natural disasters, or after criminal assaults."

She concluded, "More research is needed, but this prevention model could have significant public health implications. A long-standing hope of mental health research is to prevent the development of psychopathology in those at risk instead of being limited to symptom treatment after disease onset."


'/>"/>

Contact: Rhiannon Bugno
Biol.Psych@utsouthwestern.edu
214-648-0880
Elsevier
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. Study shows PFO closure may be superior to medical therapy in preventing stroke
2. 2 Common Blood Pressure Meds Fare Equally in Preventing Heart Woes
3. New Blood Thinner Effient No Better Than Plavix at Preventing Heart Trouble: Study
4. NIH launches trial to evaluate anti-inflammatory treatment for preventing heart attacks, strokes, and cardiovascular deaths
5. No evidence that drug used for preventing life-threatening bleeding in women during labor works
6. Scientists to investigate preventing life-threatening complications in transplant patients
7. A further step towards preventing diabetes
8. Beware of the Potato Salad: Preventing Foodborne Illness in Summer
9. Is acetazolamide effective and safe for preventing acute mountain sickness?
10. U.S. High Schools Lax in Preventing Dating Abuse: Study
11. Preventing Oral Diseases Begins in Pregnancy Claims Author in New eBook
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:5/3/2016)... ... ... Park Cities Pet Sitter has openings for both full-time and part-time pet ... 75220, 75225, 75229, 75230, 75231 and 75235 zip codes. These zip codes are ... Park Cities areas of the Metroplex. Candidates must love animals, have attention to ...
(Date:5/3/2016)... ... May 03, 2016 , ... Intrigma, the leading provider of ... is expanding its use of Intrigma’s cloud-based physician scheduling solution, Efficient Scheduler (a ... concept. The Portland, Oregon based health system conducted a one-year pilot of the ...
(Date:5/3/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... May 03, 2016 , ... Dr. Poneh ... on cosmetic dental treatments to both new and existing patients. Cosmetic dentistry allows patients ... for patients who have healthy smiles with some minor or more serious cosmetic flaws. ...
(Date:5/3/2016)... ... , ... Branches, Inc. is proud to have been selected as a Macy’s ... South Miami. Macy’s is a wonderful community partner and has helped to support Branches’ ... enrichment and academic support to elementary students 5 days a week. Summer Shade, a ...
(Date:5/3/2016)... ... May 03, 2016 , ... Hydra Skin Sciences, a top-rated skincare company ... a revolutionary new anti-aging skin care product that integrates Snow Algae Powder ... sold over seventy-five thousand units worldwide within the first two months of release. , ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:5/2/2016)... May 2, 2016 Leading Economies with Fastest Real GDP ... d,Ivoire 8.6 Uzbekistan 8 Ireland 7.8 India 7.3, , Source: ... nations , which comprises of Brazil , Russia ... South Africa , registered the fastest GDP growth during the ... China , recession in Brazil and ...
(Date:4/29/2016)... 29, 2016  In the next ten years, ... from systems dependent on CRTs monitors to those reliant ... CRT Medical monitors and will automatically sync to ... of foreseeable benefits to this technological advancement, it ... have to be replaced in order to be ...
(Date:4/29/2016)... Automation is one of the ... the growing demands for productivity in speed, accuracy, throughput ... are already adept of a wide range of functions ... labor. Instrumentation continues to evolve, and is poised to ... few years ago. Originally used mostly by the big ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: