Etkin Lab
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Psychotherapy for PTSD

 

Brain imaging of psychotherapy for PTSD

Special News! BRAINS award announcement.

We are seeking people who are currently experiencing symptoms related to PTSD and have been exposed to a traumatic event in the past to participate in a research study about psychotherapy for PTSD. This study involves office- and brain MRI-based assessments before and after treatment. All psychotherapy treatment is provided free of charge.

For those who are eligible, this study takes place at Stanford University Medical Center and the Palo Alto VA and is open to the general community as well as veterans and active duty military personnel. You do not need to be previously diagnosed with PTSD in order to participate, as this will be part of our assessment.

Participants will be compensated up to $445 for participation. Please note that phone screenings conducted to determine eligibility prior to enrollment are not compensated.

Eligibility Requirements

  • Men and Women ages 18-60 years old
  • Right-handed
  • No current or history of neurological disorders
  • No seizure disorder
  • PTSD assessed through phone screens
  • Fluent in English

Schedule

Pre-treatment

  1. In person assessment (up to 6 hours, may be scheduled in 1-3 visits; $15 per hour)
  2. fMRI brain scan + online questionnaires (scan takes 2-3 hours; questionnaires take 1-2 hours; $50 compensation for completion of both)
  3. Assigned to immediate treatment or 10-week waitlist group.
  4. fMRI/TMS brain scan (up to 4 hours; $75 compensation for successful completion of scan)

    If waitlisted, an additional:

    • fMRI scan + online questionnaires ($50 compensation for successful completion of both)
    • two 30-minute behavioral sessions (during weeks 3 and 6 of waitlist; $15 per hour compensation)
    • in-person reassessment (up to 6 hours; $15 per hour compensation)

Treatment: 9-12 sessions of Prolonged Exposure therapy (twice a week for 5-6 weeks)

  1. First therapy session is 2 hours
  2. Other therapy sessions are 1.5 hours
  3. Behavioral sessions (up to 30 minutes each; $15/hour compensation)
  4. First behavioral takes place between therapy sessions 4 and 6
  5. Second behavioral takes place after the end of therapy

One month follow up

  1. fMRI brain scan + online questionnaires (scan takes 2-3 hours; questionnaires take 1-2 hours; $75 compensation for successful completion of both)
  2. In person assessment (up to 6 hours; $15 per hour compensation)

Six month follow-up

  1. In person assessment + Online questionnaires (up to 6 hours; $75 compensation for successful completion of both)

For more information on what to expect from the study procedures discussed above:

What to expect from a fMRI:

What to expect from TMS:

News

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