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Randomised controlled trial of psychological debriefing for victims of acute burn trauma

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  03 January 2018

Jonathan I. Bisson
Affiliation:
University of Wales College of Medicine, Cardiff
Peter L. Jenkins
Affiliation:
St Cadoc's Hospital, Caerleon, Gwent
Julie Alexander
Affiliation:
St Cadoc's Hospital, Caerleon, Gwent
Carol Bannister
Affiliation:
St Cadoc's Hospital, Caerleon, Gwent
Corresponding

Abstract

Background

Psychological debriefing (PD) is widely used following major traumatic events in an attempt to reduce psychological sequelae.

Method

One hundred and thirty-three adult burn trauma victims entered the study. After initial questionnaire completion, participants were randomly allocated to an individual/couple PD group or a control group who received no intervention; 110 (83%) were interviewed by an assessor blind to PD status three and 13 months later.

Results

Sixteen (26%) of the PD group had PTSD at 13-month follow-up, compared with four (9%) of the control group. The PD group had higher initial questionnaire scores and more severe dimensions of burn trauma than the control group, both of which were associated with a poorer outcome.

Conclusions

This study seriously questions the wisdom of advocating one-off interventions post-trauma, and should stimulate research into more effective initiatives.

Type
Papers
Copyright
Copyright © 1997 The Royal College of Psychiatrists 

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