PTSD Therapies Safe for Patients With Comorbid Psychosis

Prolonged exposure, eye movement desensitization and reprocessing treatments found to be effective.

More Treatment Options Needed for PTSD and Substance Use Disorders
More Treatment Options Needed for PTSD and Substance Use Disorders

HealthDay News -- For patients with psychotic disorders and comorbid posttraumatic stress disorder, prolonged exposure therapy and eye movement desensitization and reprocessing therapy are safe and effective, according to a study published in JAMA Psychiatry.

David P.G. van den Berg, MSc, from the Parnassia Psychiatric Institute in Den Haag, Netherlands, and colleagues examined the safety and efficacy of prolonged exposure (PE) therapy and eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR) therapy in patients with psychotic disorders and comorbid PTSD.

The researchers randomly assigned participants to receive eight weekly 90-minute sessions of PE therapy (n=53), EMDR therapy (n=55), and waiting list (WL; n=47) control.

There was greater reduction in PTSD symptoms among participants in the PE and EMDR conditions versus those in the WL condition, with between-group effect sizes of 0.78 (P<0.001) in PE and 0.65 (P=0.001) in EMDR, they found.

Compared with those in the WL condition, participants in the PE condition and EMDR condition were more likely to achieve loss of diagnosis during treatment (56.6% and 60% vs. 27.7%t; odds ratios, 3.41 and 3.92, respectively).

Participants in the PE condition were more likely than those in the WL condition to achieve full remission (28.3% versus 6.4%; odds ratio, 5.97). At the six month follow-up, treatment effects were maintained in PE and EMDR.

"A priori exclusion of individuals with psychosis from evidence-based PTSD treatments may not be justifiable," the researchers wrote.

References

  1. van den Berg DPG et al. JAMA Psychiatry. 2015; doi:10.1001/jamapsychiatry.2014.2637.

Disclosure: Several authors disclosed receipt of income from published books or chapters relating to PE and EMDR, and for training for professions in these therapies.

Loading links....
You must be a registered member of Psychiatry Advisor to post a comment.

Sign Up for Free e-newsletters