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Patient characteristics as a moderator of posttraumatic stress disorder treatment outcome: combining symptom burden and strengths

  • Marylene Cloitre (a1) (a2), Eva Petkova (a3), Zhe Su (a4) and Brandon J. Weiss (a1) (a5)
Abstract
Background

Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) psychotherapy research has failed to identify patient characteristics that consistently predict differential outcome.

Aims

To identify patient characteristics associated with differential outcome via a statistically generated composite moderator among women with childhood abuse-related PTSD in a randomised controlled trial comparing exposure therapy, skills training and their combination.

Method

Six baseline patient characteristics were combined in a composite moderator of treatment effects for PTSD symptoms across the three treatment conditions through a 6-month follow-up.

Results

The optimal moderator was the combined burden of all symptoms and emotion regulation strength. Those with high moderator scores, reflecting high symptom load relative to emotion regulation, did least well in exposure, moderately well in skills and best in the combination.

Conclusions

A clinically meaningful moderator, which combines patient symptom burden and strengths, was identified. Assessment at follow-up may provide a more accurate indicator of variability in outcome than that obtained immediately post-treatment.

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Copyright
This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Non-Commercial, No Derivatives (CC BY-NC-ND) licence (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/).
Corresponding author
Marylene Cloitre, National Center for PTSD Dissemination and Training Division, VA Palo Alto Health Care System, 795 Willow Road, Menlo Park, CA 94025, USA. Email: marylene.cloitre@va.gov
Footnotes
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Declaration of interest

None.

Copyright and usage

© The Royal College of Psychiatrists 2016. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Non-Commercial, No Derivatives (CC BY-NC-ND) licence.

Footnotes
References
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Patient characteristics as a moderator of posttraumatic stress disorder treatment outcome: combining symptom burden and strengths

  • Marylene Cloitre (a1) (a2), Eva Petkova (a3), Zhe Su (a4) and Brandon J. Weiss (a1) (a5)
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