Study Compares Two Types of Couples Retreats for PTSD, Relationships

Clinical trial evaluates a novel, multi-couple, group therapy versus an established relationship education program

A pilot study by our group showed benefits of delivering an evidence-based treatment called Cognitive-Behavioral Conjoint Therapy (CBCT) for PTSD in the condensed format of a multi-couple, group-style, two-day retreat. This novel, retreat format for therapy delivery overcame many of the logistical barriers of the traditional 15-session, months-long treatment; it also captured a majority of its benefits for reducing PTSD and co-occurring symptoms and improving relationship satisfaction.

Now the STRONG STAR Consortium based at The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio is running a large-scale, randomized clinical trial to evaluate this format as a stand-alone treatment.

The trial will compare the multi-couple, retreat-style CBCT to the Prevention and Relationship Education Program (PREP). PREP is a well-established, group-based, relationship education program that also involves couples going away together to work on their relationship, and research has shown it to enhance couples’ psychological and relational well-being. It has been adapted for military couples and disseminated in a weekend workshop format through the Army Chaplain Corps.

We are currently recruiting military and veteran couples for this trial, with retreats to be held in-person at a hotel in San Antonio, Texas. There is no charge for the retreats, and food and lodging will be provided.

Are you?

— A military service member or veteran who is married or in a serious relationship?
— Troubled by traumatic memories, nightmares, or flashbacks?
— Experiencing mood swings, irritability, a need to be always alert, or sleep difficulties?
— Avoiding things that remind you of your trauma?
— Able to get away for two days with your partner to focus on treatment?

If so, this may be a great option for you. To inquire about participation, call 210-562-6726 or use the Get Treatment Contact Form to send us a private message.

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