The impact of sudden gains in cognitive behavioral therapy for posttraumatic stress disorder.


Journal Article

This study investigated sudden gains, i.e., rapid and stable improvements, in posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptoms that may occur in cognitive-behavioral therapy. Twenty-nine of 72 participants (39.2%) experienced a sudden gain during treatment. Mixed model ANOVAs analyzed sudden gains impact on clinician-rated PTSD symptom severity, patient-rated PTSD symptom severity, and patient-rated depressive symptom severity. Sudden gains in PTSD symptomology were associated with greater reductions in PTSD symptom severity for the avoidance/numbing and hyperarousal symptom clusters at posttreatment. By 6-month follow-up, the sudden gains group had maintained those reductions in symptoms, but the nonsudden gains group had achieved equal reductions in symptom severity. Participants experiencing sudden gains on PTSD measures had lower depression severity at posttreatment and follow-up.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Kelly, KA; Rizvi, SL; Monson, CM; Resick, PA

Published Date

  • August 2009

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 22 / 4

Start / End Page

  • 287 - 293

PubMed ID

  • 19637322

Pubmed Central ID

  • 19637322

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1573-6598

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1002/jts.20427


  • eng

Conference Location

  • United States