A group of highly traumatized refugees n = 26 with diverse cultural backgrounds in a Danish Clinic for Traumatized Refugees (CTR) was assessed for symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder and other aspects of general functioning. Patients were assessed at intake, after the end of treatment and six months later. The results point to very high symptom levels and a large need for treatment in this population. Psychiatric symptoms and their correlates were assessed with the Harvard Trauma Questionnaire (HTQ), the Trauma Symptom Checklist-23 (TSC-23), the Global Assessment of Function (GAF), and the Crisis Support Scale (CSS). The Trail Making Test A & B (TMT) was used as a screening instrument for acquired brain damage, with promising results. Indications of effectiveness from 16-18 weeks of multidisciplinary treatment (physiotherapy, pharmacotherapy, psychotherapy, and social counseling) were supported with small to medium effect sizes on most outcome measures. The results are discussed in terms of clinical implications and future treatment, assessment, and research needs.
This report will explain the unique nature of the two avalanche accidents at Súthavík and Flateyri in the western part of Iceland. The report will describe the difficult conditions encountered by the rescuers, the medical personnel and all the other people involved. Finally, the implementation of Critical Incident Stress Management (CISM) will be described.
A first aim of this study is to evaluate the efficacy of an open group therapy for sexually abused teenagers using a quasi-experimental pretest/posttest treatment design. A second aim was to explore whether differential gains were linked to an open versus a closed group format. Results indicate that sexually abused girls involved in an open group therapy showed significant gains relative to teenagers of the control group girls for the majority of the variables considered. Analyses contrasting the two formats of group therapy fail to identify statistical differences suggesting that both open and closed group formats are likely to be associated with the same significant gains for sexually abused teenagers.
The author recounts the circumstances, beginning in the late 1980s, that lead to the creation of Windsor Fire and Rescue's (WFRS) Peer Counseling and Critical Incident Stress Team. These include his more than 20 year journey from being a firefighter in need of counseling to being asked to become WFRSS mental health professional.
Data from 99 school-aged Bosnian refugee children living in Sweden were analyzed to reveal the patterns of war stress experienced and the relation between these stressors and current psychological problems. A significant pattern of associations emerged. When children had experienced much stress, talking about their experiences seemed to exacerbate their negative effects.
Longitudinal studies of traumatized refugees are needed to study changes in mental health over time and to improve health-related and social interventions. The aim of this study was to examine changes in symptoms of PTSD, depression, and anxiety, and in health-related quality of life during treatment in traumatized refugees. The study group comprises 55 persons admitted to the Rehabilitation and Research Centre for Torture Victims in 2001 and 2002. Data on background, trauma, present social situation, mental symptoms (Hopkins Symptom Checklist-25, Hamilton Depression Scale, Harvard Trauma Questionnaire), and health-related quality of life (WHO Quality of Life-Bref) were collected before treatment and after 9 months. No change in mental symptoms or health-related quality of life was observed. In spite of the treatment, emotional distress seems to be chronic for the majority of this population. Future studies are needed to explore which health-related and social interventions are most useful to traumatized refugees.
Guided internet-administered self-help to reduce symptoms of anxiety and depression among adolescents and young adults diagnosed with cancer during adolescence (U-CARE: YoungCan): a study protocol for a feasibility trial.
A subgroup of adolescents and young adults diagnosed with cancer during adolescence reports elevated levels of anxiety and depressive symptoms and unmet needs for psychological support. Evidence-based psychological treatments tailored for this population are lacking. This protocol describes a feasibility study of a guided-internet-administered self-help programme (YoungCan) primarily targeting symptoms of anxiety and depression among young persons diagnosed with cancer during adolescence and of the planned study procedures for a future controlled trial.
The study is an uncontrolled feasibility trial with a pre-post and 3-month follow-up design. Potential participants aged 15-25 years, diagnosed with cancer during adolescence, will be identified via the Swedish Childhood Cancer Registry. 30 participants will be included. Participants will receive YoungCan, a 12-week therapist-guided, internet-administered self-help programme consisting primarily of cognitive-behavioural therapy organised into individually assigned modules targeting depressive symptoms, worry and anxiety, body dissatisfaction and post-traumatic stress. Interactive peer support and psychoeducative functions are also available. Feasibility outcomes include: recruitment and eligibility criteria; data collection; attrition; resources needed to complete the study and programme; safety procedures; participants' and therapists' adherence to the programme; and participants' acceptability of the programme and study methodology. Additionally, mechanisms of impact will be explored and data regarding symptoms of anxiety, depression, post-traumatic stress, body dissatisfaction, reactions to social interactions, quality of life, axis I diagnoses according to the Mini International Neuropsychiatric Interview and healthcare service use will be collected. Exploratory analyses of changes in targeted outcomes will be conducted.
This feasibility protocol was approved by the Regional Ethical Review Board in Uppsala, Sweden (ref: 2016/210). Findings will be disseminated to relevant research, clinical, health service and patient communities through publications in peer-reviewed and popular science journals and presentations at scientific and clinical conferences.
The number of refugees is the highest ever worldwide. Many have experienced trauma in home countries or on their escape which has mental health sequelae. Intrusive memories comprise distressing scenes of trauma which spring to mind unbidden. Development of novel scalable psychological interventions is needed urgently.
We propose that brief cognitive science-driven interventions should be developed which pinpoint a focal symptom alongside a means to monitor it using behavioural techniques. The aim of the current study was to assess the feasibility and acceptability of the methodology required to develop such an intervention.
In this study we recruited 22 refugees (16-25 years), predominantly from Syria and residing in Sweden. Participants were asked to monitor the frequency of intrusive memories of trauma using a daily diary; rate intrusions and concentration; and complete a 1-session behavioural intervention involving Tetris game-play via smartphone.
Frequency of intrusive memories was high, and associated with high levels of distress and impaired concentration. Levels of engagement with study procedures were highly promising.
The current work opens the way for developing novel cognitive behavioural approaches for traumatized refugees that are mechanistically derived, freely available and internationally scalable.