For a study, researchers sought to understand that posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) affects military populations more than civilian populations, and military populations may not benefit as much from first-line PTSD psychotherapies. They investigated potential moderators of treatment-related, demographic, and clinical outcomes as well as the effectiveness of exposure therapy in active-duty service members and veterans under varied control conditions. Randomized controlled trials for exposure-based therapy for PTSD in military populations have been found through recent meta-analyses, PsycINFO, and Medline searches. About 19 studies (a total of 2,905) that met the inclusion criteria were included in the meta-analysis. While exposure treatment had little to no impact on other trauma-focused therapies, it had moderate to significant effects when compared to waiting lists and standard care. At follow-up and post-treatment, the overall effect remained constant. Studies with more women, younger participants, fewer patients with concurrent serious depression, and fewer people using psychiatric medication saw larger impact sizes for exposure. Treatment length or kind, participant race or ethnicity, concurrent substance use, veteran status in comparison to active service status, and study bias risk had no bearing on effect sizes. Results show that exposure therapy’s effectiveness varied among various comparator types in military populations, and they also hint at a number of potential result moderators that require additional investigation.

Source: sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0887618522000809