Cognitive and Behavioral Practice, 29(3), 710-721.
Although prolonged exposure (PE) has been identified as a first-line treatment for posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD),research has found that military service members and veterans have smaller reductions in symptom severity compared to civilians. The nature of trauma in a deployed combat setting and the unique complexities of military culture have been proposed as explanations for greater rates of PTSD and poorer treatment response to first-line psychotherapies in military and veteran populations. This paper presents a case study to highlight how a novel, intensive outpatient program utilizing prolonged exposure therapy (IOP-PE) may benefit military personnel with combat-related PTSD. The patient is a Caucasian man in his early 40s seeking treatment for PTSD after more than 10 years of enlisted, active duty military service across two branches and three combat deployments. The IOP-PE includes the standard PE components and eight, nonstandard treatment augmentations tailored for military personnel. In contrast to standard PE, which typically is delivered weekly over several months, IOP-PE consists of 15 daily, 90-minute PE sessions conducted over 3 weeks. The patient demonstrated large reductions on the Clinician-Administered PTSD Scale (28 points) and PTSD Checklist (48 points) by the 6-month posttreatment follow-up point. Findings provide support for conducting further research that determines whether IOP-PE is effective and tolerable in military and veteran populations.