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Carlson GC, Kelly MR, Mitchell M, Josephson KR, McGowan SK, Culver NC, Kay M, Alessi CA, Fung CH, Washington DL, Hamilton A, Yano EM, Martin JL. Benefits of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Insomnia for Women Veterans with and without Probable Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. Women's health issues : official publication of the Jacobs Institute of Women's Health. 2022 Mar 1; 32(2):194-202.
OBJECTIVE: This study compared the benefits of cognitive-behavioral therapy for insomnia for sleep, mental health symptoms, and quality of life (QoL) in a sample of women veterans with and without probable post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) comorbid with insomnia disorder. METHODS: Seventy-three women veterans (30 with probable PTSD) received a manual-based 5-week cognitive-behavioral therapy for insomnia treatment as part of a behavioral sleep intervention study. Measures were completed at baseline, post-treatment, and 3-month follow-up. Sleep measures included the Insomnia Severity Index, Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index, sleep efficiency measured by actigraphy, and sleep efficiency and total sleep time measured by sleep diary. Mental health measures included the PTSD Checklist-5, nightmares per week, Patient Health Questionnaire-9, and Generalized Anxiety Disorder-7 scale. QoL was measured with the Short Form-12. Linear mixed models compared changes over time across groups. Independent t tests examined PTSD symptom changes in women veterans with probable PTSD. RESULTS: Both groups demonstrated improvements across sleep (ps < .001-.040), mental health symptoms (ps < .001), and QoL measures (ps < .001). The probable PTSD group reported greater improvements in diary sleep efficiency (p = .046) and nightmares per week (p = .001) at post-treatment and in total sleep time (p = .029) and nightmares per week (p = .006) at follow-up. Most participants with probable PTSD experienced clinically significant reductions in PTSD symptoms at post-treatment (66.7%) and follow-up (60.0%). Significant reductions in intrusive and arousal/reactivity symptoms were maintained at follow-up. CONCLUSIONS: Cognitive-behavioral therapy for insomnia improves insomnia, mental health symptoms, and QoL among women veterans, with greater improvement in those with probable PTSD.