Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

After traumatic event, early intervention reduces odds of PTSD in children by 73 percent

Date:
October 1, 2010
Source:
University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine
Summary:
A new approach that helps improve communication between child and caregiver, such as recognizing and managing traumatic stress symptoms and teaching coping skills, was able to prevent chronic and sub-clinical PTSD in 73 percent of children. The intervention, called the Child and Family Traumatic Stress Intervention also reduced PTSD symptoms in children -- which can include reliving a traumatic experience, sleep disturbances or emotional numbness -- and promoted recovery more quickly than a comparison intervention.

After experiencing a potentially traumatic event -- a car accident, a physical or sexual assault, a sports injury, witnessing violence -- as many as 1 in 5 children will develop Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).

Related Articles


A new approach that helps improve communication between child and caregiver, such as recognizing and managing traumatic stress symptoms and teach coping skills, was able to prevent chronic and sub-clinical PTSD in 73 percent of children. The intervention, called the Child and Family Traumatic Stress Intervention (CFTSI) also reduced PTSD symptoms in children -- which can include reliving a traumatic experience, sleep disturbances, emotional numbness, angry outbursts or difficulties concentrating -- and promoted recovery more quickly than a comparison intervention.

"This is the first preventative intervention to improve outcomes in children who have experienced a potentially traumatic event, and the first to reduce the onset of PTSD in kids," said lead study author Steven Berkowitz, MD, associate professor of Clinical Psychiatry at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine and director of the Penn Center for Youth and Family Trauma Response and Recovery. "If this study is replicated and validated in future studies, this intervention could be used nationally to help children successfully recover from a traumatic event without progressing to PTSD."

The study now appears online in the Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry.

In the study, 106 children ranging from 7 to 17 years in age and a caregiver were randomly assigned to receive the four-session Child and Family Traumatic Stress Intervention or a four-session supportive comparison intervention, both provided within 30 days following exposure to a traumatic event. Children were referred by police, a forensic sexual abuse program, or the local pediatric emergency department in an urban city in Connecticut. The CFTSI intervention began with an initial baseline assessment to measure the child's trauma history and a preliminary visit with the caregiver, focusing on their essential role in the process. Within the sessions, there is a focus on improving communication between the child and caregiver, as well as other supportive measures. At the end of the next two sessions, the clinician, caregiver and child, decide on a homework assignment to practice certain coping skills. The behavioral skill components provide techniques to recognize and manage traumatic stress symptoms.

Future studies will need to validate the effectiveness of this intervention, but researchers hope that brief and effective interventions like CFTSI can be applied early to prevent the development of PTSD.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Steven J. Berkowitz, Carla Smith Stover, Steven R. Marans. The Child and Family Traumatic Stress Intervention: Secondary prevention for youth at risk of developing PTSD. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, 2010; DOI: 10.1111/j.1469-7610.2010.02321.x

Cite This Page:

University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine. "After traumatic event, early intervention reduces odds of PTSD in children by 73 percent." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 1 October 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/09/100929123632.htm>.
University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine. (2010, October 1). After traumatic event, early intervention reduces odds of PTSD in children by 73 percent. ScienceDaily. Retrieved March 4, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/09/100929123632.htm
University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine. "After traumatic event, early intervention reduces odds of PTSD in children by 73 percent." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/09/100929123632.htm (accessed March 4, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Mind & Brain News

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

This Nasal Treatment Could Help Ease Migraine Pain

This Nasal Treatment Could Help Ease Migraine Pain

Newsy (Mar. 2, 2015) Researchers gave lidocaine to 112 patients, and about 88 percent of the subjects said they needed less migraine-relief medicine the next day. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
How Facebook Use Can Lead To Depression

How Facebook Use Can Lead To Depression

Newsy (Mar. 1, 2015) Margaret Duffy of the University of Missouri talks about her study on the social network and the envy and depression that Facebook use can cause. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
The Best Foods to Battle Stress

The Best Foods to Battle Stress

Buzz60 (Feb. 26, 2015) If you&apos;re dealing with anxiety, there are a few foods that can help. Krystin Goodwin (@krystingoodwin) has the best foods to tame stress. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
Sleeping Too Much Or Too Little Might Increase Stroke Risk

Sleeping Too Much Or Too Little Might Increase Stroke Risk

Newsy (Feb. 26, 2015) People who sleep more than eight hours per night are 45 percent more likely to have a stroke, according to a University of Cambridge study. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

    Health News

      Environment News

        Technology News



          Save/Print:
          Share:

          Free Subscriptions


          Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

          Get Social & Mobile


          Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

          Have Feedback?


          Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
          Mobile: iPhone Android Web
          Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
          Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
          Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins