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Self-help group participation among substance use disorder patients with posttraumatic stress disorder.

Ouimette P, Humphreys K, Moos RH, Finney JW, Cronkite R, Federman B. Self-help group participation among substance use disorder patients with posttraumatic stress disorder. Journal of substance abuse treatment. 2001 Jan 1; 20(1):25-32.

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Debate has ensued about whether substance use disorder (SUD) patients with comorbid posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) participate in and benefit from 12-step groups. One hundred fifty-nine SUD-PTSD and 1,429 SUD-only male patients were compared on participation in 12-step activities following an index episode of treatment. Twelve-step participation was similar for SUD patients with and without PTSD. PTSD patients with worldviews (e.g., holding disease model beliefs) that more closely matched 12-step philosophy participated more in 12-step activities. Although greater participation was associated with better concurrent functioning, participation did not prospectively predict outcomes after case mix adjustment. An exception was that greater participation predicted decreased distress among PTSD patients whose identity was more consistent with 12-step philosophy. In summary, PTSD patients participate in and benefit from 12-step participation; continuing involvement may be necessary to maintain positive benefits.

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