Clinical Edge

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Mapping Unique PTSD Symptom Clusters in Veterans

Psychiatry Res; ePub 2017 Jun 5; Smith, Tsai, et al

When considering treatment approaches for trauma-exposed veterans, it is important to map the severity of unique posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptom clusters, a recent study found. This may have implications on the selection of treatment that best fits veterans’ needs and preferences (eg, exposure therapy vs cognitive processing therapy). This study utilized national VA administrative data from Iraq and Afghanistan veterans following an initial diagnosis of PTSD and a self-report measure of PTSD symptoms between Fiscal Years 2008–2012 (n=52,456; 91.7% male; 59.7% Caucasian; mean age 30.6, SD=8.3). They found:

  • Accounting for demographic/clinical variables, PTSD symptom clusters were related to psychotherapy initiation (re-experiencing, odds ratio [OR]=1.23; numbing, OR=1.15), combination treatment (medication and psychotherapy; re-experiencing, OR=1.14; avoidance, OR=1.07; dysphoric arousal, OR=1.06), number of psychotherapy visits (re-experiencing, incidence rate ratio [IRR]=1.08; numbing, IRR=1.09), and adequate dose of therapy (eg, 8 visits/14 weeks; re-experiencing: OR= 1.07).


Smith NB, Tsai J, Pietrzak RH, Cook JM, Hoff R, Harpaz-Rotem I. Simplifying profiles of comorbidity in bipolar disorder. [Published online ahead of print June 5, 2017]. Psychiatry Res. doi: 10.1016/j.jad.2017.05.045.

This Week's Must Reads

Family Involvement in Veterans with Schizophrenia, Psychiatr Rehabil J; ePub 2019 Mar 28; Cohen, et al

Cognitive Training Program in Schizophrenia, Schizophr Res; ePub 2019 Mar 28; Mahncke, et al

Continuous Exercise & CI in Schizophrenia, Front Psychiatry; ePub 2019 Mar 13; Herbsleb, et al

MHC Risk Variants in Cortical Thickness, Brain Behav; ePub 2019 Mar 28; Tao, et al

Disclosing the Diagnosis of Schizophrenia, Int J Soc Psychiatry; ePub 2019 Mar 27; Setti, et al

Must Reads in PTSD

Sleep Difficulties in PTSD: Challenging to Treat, Depress Anxiety; ePub 2018 Dec 21; Schnurr, et al

Drug/Alcohol Use Associated with PTSD in Soldiers, Am J Addictions; ePub 2018 Dec 12; Homish, et al

PTSD Clusters and Suicidal Ideation Examined, Psychiatry Res; ePub 2018 Sep 15; Brown, et al

Role of Obesity in Link Between PTSD and Diabetes, JAMA Psychiatry; ePub 2018 Aug 8; Scherrer, et al

Treating PTSD in Veterans Using Mantram Repetition, Am J Psychiatry; ePub 2018 Jun 20; Bormann, et al