Internet-based cognitive and behavioural therapies for posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) in adults

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Therapist-delivered trauma-focused psychological therapies are an effective treatment for post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). These have become the accepted first-line treatments for the disorder. Despite the established evidence-base for these therapies, they are not always widely available or accessible.Many barriers limit treatment uptake, such as the limited number of qualified therapists to deliver the interventions, cost, and compliance issues, such as time off work, childcare, and transportation, associated with the need to attend weekly appointments. Delivering cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) on the Internet is an effective and acceptable alternative to therapist-delivered treatments for anxiety and depression. However, fewer Internet-based therapies have been developed and evaluated for PTSD, and uncertainty surrounds the efficacy of Internet-based cognitive and behavioural therapy (I-C/BT) for PTSD. Objectives To assess the effects of I-C/BT for PTSD in adults. Search methods We searched the Cochrane Common Mental Disorders Group's Specialised Register (CCMDCTR) to June 2016 and identified four studies meeting the inclusion criteria. The CCMDCTR includes relevant randomised controlled trials (RCT) from MEDLINE, Embase, and PsycINFO.We also searched online clinical trial registries and reference lists of included studies, and contacted researchers in the field to identify additional and ongoing studies. We ran an update search on 1 March 2018, and identified four additional completed studies, which we added to the analyses along with two that were previously awaiting classification. Selection criteria We searched for RCTs of I-C/BT compared to face-to-face or Internet-based psychological treatment, psychoeducation, wait list or care as usual. We included studies of adults (aged over 16 years or over), in which at least 70% of the participants met the diagnostic criteria for PTSD, according to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual (DSM) or the International Classification of Diseases (ICD).




Lewis, C., Roberts, N. P., Bethell, A., Robertson, L., & Bisson, J. I. (2018, December 14). Internet-based cognitive and behavioural therapies for posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) in adults. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews. John Wiley and Sons Ltd.

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