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Combining clinical studies and analogue experiments to investigate cognitive mechanisms in posttraumatic stress disorder


Ehring, T; Kleim, B; Ehlers, A (2011). Combining clinical studies and analogue experiments to investigate cognitive mechanisms in posttraumatic stress disorder. International Journal of Cognitive Therapy, 4(2):165-177.

Abstract

Research into cognitive mechanisms in posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) typi- cally comprises two types of studies. The first group of studies is conducted with survivors of traumatic events and assesses the association between PTSD and cog- nitive variables with questionnaires and/or information processing paradigms. In the second group of studies, healthy nontraumatized individuals are exposed to an analogue stressor (e.g., a stressful film) and cognitive variables of interest are usually experimentally manipulated to investigate their effects on analogue PTSD symptoms. This review illustrates how studies of trauma survivors and analogue studies with nontraumatized populations can be usefully combined. Two examples for this approach are presented: (1) research into the role of perceptual priming for trauma-related stimuli and (2) research into trauma-related rumination. The advantages and limitations of both types of studies are discussed and it is argued that a combination of both approaches is needed to investigate cognitive mecha- nisms in PTSD.

Abstract

Research into cognitive mechanisms in posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) typi- cally comprises two types of studies. The first group of studies is conducted with survivors of traumatic events and assesses the association between PTSD and cog- nitive variables with questionnaires and/or information processing paradigms. In the second group of studies, healthy nontraumatized individuals are exposed to an analogue stressor (e.g., a stressful film) and cognitive variables of interest are usually experimentally manipulated to investigate their effects on analogue PTSD symptoms. This review illustrates how studies of trauma survivors and analogue studies with nontraumatized populations can be usefully combined. Two examples for this approach are presented: (1) research into the role of perceptual priming for trauma-related stimuli and (2) research into trauma-related rumination. The advantages and limitations of both types of studies are discussed and it is argued that a combination of both approaches is needed to investigate cognitive mecha- nisms in PTSD.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:06 Faculty of Arts > Institute of Psychology
Dewey Decimal Classification:150 Psychology
Language:English
Date:2011
Deposited On:28 Nov 2011 12:01
Last Modified:07 Dec 2017 09:56
Publisher:Guilford Press
ISSN:1937-1209
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1521/ijct.2011.4.2.165

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