Healing Touch with Guided Imagery for PTSD
Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a common and persistent problem in military populations with an estimated 21.8% of veterans diagnosed after Iraq and Afghanistan. Along with PTSD, there is an increase in substance abuse, depression, and interpersonal conflicts in this population. The more a solider is exposed to combat, the higher the risk is for developing PTSD. There is a strong negative stigma against mental health care for active or recently deployed soldiers, despite having a higher incidence of reported mental health issues. Because of this, there is a need for treatment without the stigma for PTSD symptoms for active duty military in general health care settings as opposed to solely…show more content… Study Design/Sample and Setting
This is a Phase 2, two-armed, randomized controlled trial study of a CAM intervention (Healing Touch with Guided Imagery) compared to treatment as usual. It was conducted at the Marine Corps Base Camp in Camp Pendleton, California with 123 active duty military personnel, of which 21 participants dropped out. Participants were chosen by hanging flyers at the Deployment Health Clinics and the mental health department at Camp Pendleton. Health care providers at these locations also provided candidates that were potentially eligible that were currently experiencing at least one or more of the hallmark PTSD symptoms. These include re-experiencing of trauma (i.e. flashbacks, nightmares), exaggerated arousal (i.e. insomnia, irritability), emotional numbing, and/or avoidance of people, places, situations that remind them of the trauma. From there, potential candidates were screened via telephone by research staff and, if eligible, they made an appointment to sign consent and complete pretest questionnaires. Each participant was randomized using a computer-generated randomization table by a statistician and assigned their groups; either Healing Touch with Guided Imagery (HT+GI) or TAU (Jain et al., 2012).
Study Instruments PTSD symptoms were measured by the gold-standard PTSD Checklist