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HSR&D Citation Abstract

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Dindo L, Johnson AL, Lang B, Rodrigues M, Martin L, Jorge R. Development and evaluation of an 1-day Acceptance and Commitment Therapy workshop for Veterans with comorbid chronic pain, TBI, and psychological distress: Outcomes from a pilot study. Contemporary clinical trials. 2020 Mar 1; 90:105954.
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Abstract: OBJECTIVES: To 1) develop and refine a 1-day trans-diagnostic psychotherapeutic "ACT on Life" workshop tailored for Veterans with mild traumatic brain injury, stress-based psychopathology, and pain; 2) examine the feasibility, acceptability, and preliminary effects of this intervention. SETTING: A Veterans Health Administration medical center. PARTICIPANTS: Veterans returning from Operations Iraqi Freedom, Enduring Freedom, and New Dawn with mild TBI, stress-based psychopathology, and chronic pain. DESIGN: Phase I involved development of the intervention by experts and subsequent refinement based on Veteran feedback (N  =  11). Phase II was a pilot randomized controlled trial comparing the effects of the revised intervention (N  =  20) to treatment as usual (TAU; N  =  12). MAIN MEASURES: For phase I, qualitative feedback at 2 weeks and 3 months post-workshop was obtained from Veterans. For phase II, quantitative measures included the PTSD Checklist, Depression Anxiety and Stress Scale, Military-to-Civilian Questionnaire, WHO-Disability Assessment Schedule, Brief Pain Inventory, Acceptance and Action Questionnaire. RESULTS: Veterans found the workshop acceptable, innovative and useful. Quantitative data from phase II suggested that participants in the ACT group, relative to TAU, showed improvement in psychiatric symptoms, functioning, and reintegration 3 months post-workshop. Unexpectedly, pain interference was lower in the TAU group at follow-up. CONCLUSIONS: Preliminary results support the feasibility, acceptability, and promising effects on psychological distress and community reintegration of this 1-day, transdiagnostic workshop for Veterans. Future research examining the effectiveness of this workshop with a larger sample size is necessary.

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