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Response or Comment

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Nathan (2005) and Petronko (2005) provide excellent commentaries on our three case studies (Cigrang, Peterson, & Schobitz, 2005) describing the use of prolonged imaginal exposure for the secondary prevention of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). In this response, we note that future research should build upon the lessons and experiences of these cases and include larger sample sizes, additional measures (anxiety, depression, grief, quality of life, subjective units of distress ratings), the development of a flexible treatment manual, and formal measures of Acute Stress Disorder (ASD). Future research should also target process measures such as patient acceptability of the treatment and willingness to engage in the exposure sessions. Deployed military psychologists, in collaboration with civilian researchers, have the potential to further advance the scientific knowledge base on the assessment and treatment of combat-stress disorders through the use of innovative case studies. The potential importance of research and formalized treatments for individuals exposed to the significant psychological trauma related to terrorist attacks and bombings is highlighted.


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