Effectiveness of group-delivered cognitive therapy and treatment length in women veterans with ptsd

Diane T. Castillo, Katharine Lacefield, Janet C.de Baca, Abby Blankenship, Clifford Qualls

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


The effectiveness and length of group-delivered cognitive treatment for Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) was examined in a sample of women veterans. The sample included 271 primarily non-Hispanic white (61%) and Hispanic (25%) women veterans treated in 8-, 10-, or 12-group length sessions with manualized cognitive therapy for PTSD. Outcome was measured with the PTSD Symptom Checklist (PCL) in an intention-to-treat analysis (N = 271), in completer subjects (n = 172), and with group as the unit of analysis (n = 47 groups). Significant decreases in PTSD were found in the full sample (effect size [ES] range = 0.27 to 0.38), completers (ES range = 0.37 to 0.54), and group as the unit of analysis (ES range = 0.71 to 0.92), suggesting effectiveness of cognitive group treatment for PTSD. PCL scores significantly improved in the 8, 10, and 12 group lengths, with no differences between each. Clinical improvement showed a third decreasing 10 or more PCL points and 22% no longer meeting PTSD diagnostic criteria, with the best results in the 10-session group. The results suggest group-delivered cognitive therapy is an effective, efficient, time-limited treatment for PTSD.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)31-41
Number of pages11
JournalBehavioral Sciences
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 2014


  • Cognitive processing therapy
  • Group therapy
  • PTSD
  • Women veterans

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Development
  • Genetics
  • Psychology(all)
  • Behavioral Neuroscience


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