Benefits of a Psychodynamic Group Therapy (PGT) Model for Treating Veterans With PTSD

Ofir Levi, Yael Shoval-Zuckerman, Eyal Fruchter, Arie Bibi, Yair Bar-Haim, Ilan Wald

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Objective: To examine the effectiveness of a treatment model of psychodynamic group therapy (PGT) for combat Veterans with posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Method: A total of 158 male Veterans with PTSD (mean age = 30.09 years) were assigned to 15 treatment groups of 7–13 patients each. PGT was a 1-year therapy, 1.5 hour, once-a-week sessions administered in the following stages: group building activities, differentiation of group members, intimacy building, and termination. Levels of PTSD and depression symptoms, functioning, and hope were assessed at pretreatment baseline, posttreatment, and 12-month follow-up. Results: Multilevel modeling analyses indicate that our group therapy is associated with reductions in PTSD and depressive symptoms at posttreatment, and that these effects were maintained at 12-month follow-up. The results also showed significantly improved patients' functioning by the end of therapy and at the 12-month follow-up point, and that the patients’ hope level had increased. Conclusion: The findings show that our model of psychodynamic group therapy is associated with mental improvements in Veterans with PTSD. However, further randomized controlled trials are recommended to establish the advantages of our therapeutic method compared to other modes of therapy.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1247-1258
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Clinical Psychology
Volume73
Issue number10
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 2017

Keywords

  • combat related PTSD
  • depression
  • function
  • hope
  • psychodynamic group therapy
  • significant clinical change

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