JOURNAL ARTICLE

Effects of trauma-focused psychotherapy upon war refugees

Johannes Kruse, Ljiljana Joksimovic, Majda Cavka, Wolfgang Wöller, Norbert Schmitz
Journal of Traumatic Stress 2009, 22 (6): 585-92
19960519
The aim of this study is to evaluate the effects of a trauma-focused psychotherapy upon war refugees from Bosnia. Seventy refugees who met the criteria for posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and somatoform disorders were included. The first 35 refugees were offered psychotherapy and the following 35 refugees received usual care. Outcome variables were changes in self-reported PTSD symptoms, psychological symptoms, and health status. At 12-month follow-up, participants in the intervention group reported significantly lower scores on the PTSD scale and the measure of psychological symptoms than the comparison group participants. Our results suggest that psychotherapy reduces symptoms of PTSD and somatoform disorders among war refugees even in the presence of insecure residence status.

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