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VA practice patterns and practice guidelines for treating posttraumatic stress disorder.

Rosen CS, Chow HC, Finney JF, Greenbaum MA, Moos RH, Sheikh JI, Yesavage JA. VA practice patterns and practice guidelines for treating posttraumatic stress disorder. Journal of traumatic stress. 2004 Jun 1; 17(3):213-22.

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Little is known about how recent ISTSS practice guidelines (E. B. Foa, T. M. Keane, and M. J. Friedman, 2000) compare with prevailing PTSD treatment practices for veterans. Prior to guideline dissemination, clinicians in 6 VA medical centers were surveyed in 1999 (n = 321) and in 2001 (n = 271) regarding their use of various assessment and treatment procedures. Practices most consistent with guideline recommendations included psychoeducation, coping skills training, attention to trust issues, depression and substance use screening, and prescribing of SSRIs, anticonvulsants, and trazodone. PTSD and trauma assessment, anger management, and sleep hygiene practices were provided less consistently. Exposure therapy was rarely used. Additional research is needed on training, clinical resources, and organizational factors that may influence VA implementation of guideline recommendations.

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