Using a cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) appears more effective than “present-centered” therapy (talking about current problems) to treat female military veterans and active duty women with post-traumatic stress disorder (PSTD).

Here are the details.

  • Randomized controlled trial
  • 284 female veterans and active-duty personnel PTSD
  • Assigned to CBT or present-centered therapy
  • 10 weekly 90-minute sessions
  • Data collected before, after, and at 3- and 6-month after treatment.

And the results as reported in the February 28 issue of The Journal of the American Medical Association.

  • Women who received CBT were more likely to no longer meet the criteria for PTSD (41% vs. 28%)
  • And more than twice as likely to achieve total remission (15% vs. 7%)
  • Self-reported PTSD, depression, and overall mental health improved from pretreatment to post-treatment in both groups.

But here’s the real challenge: “for large health care systems like those of the VA and the Department of Defense … to find efficient ways to train personnel to promote dissemination of these effective treatments,” the authors conclude.

2/26/07 21:11 JR

Hi, I’m JR

John Russo, Jr., PharmD, is president of The MedCom Resource, Inc. Previously, he was senior vice president of medical communications at, a complementary and alternative medicine website.