Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is quite common and often disabling. PTSD has serious long-term morbidity, and effective treatments are urgently needed.
The purpose of this study was to assess the effectiveness of Brief Eclectic Psychotherapy (BEP) in a sample of police officers with PTSD.
The setting for the study was the Department of Psychiatry at the Academic Medical Center of the University of Amsterdam.
The study sample included 42 patients with PTSD. 22 were randomly assigned to the treatment group and 20 to the wait-list control group.
Psychometric assessments were conducted by trained research psychologists at four points in time: one week before the start of treatment, one month after the start, four months after the start and three months after termination.
Individual psychotherapy, 60 minute sessions over 16 weeks. BEP course which included psycho-education, imaginary guidance, writing assignments and mementos, domain of meaning or integration, and a farewell ritual.
The control group was waitlisted and told they would receive treatment in 7 months. They were monitored by a non-assessor psychologist in the interim.
At post test and at follow-up BEP had produced significant improvement in PTSD, in work resumption and in comorbid other conditions.
Further research is needed to see if BEP will be effective for other traumatized populations and if the effects of treatment will be long term.