Single-case experimental studies of a self-help manual for traumatic stress in earthquake survivors

J Behav Ther Exp Psychiatry. 2009 Mar;40(1):50-8. doi: 10.1016/j.jbtep.2008.04.001. Epub 2008 Apr 10.


Studies showed that earthquake-related posttraumatic stress disorder could be reduced by a single session of therapist instructions for self-exposure to fear cues. Eight single-case experimental studies examined whether such instructions were as effective when delivered through a self-help manual after an initial assessment. After two baseline assessments conducted at the participants homes, the manual was delivered to the participants, who were then assessed at week 10 (post-treatment) and at 1-, 3-, and 6-month post-treatment. After minimal improvement during the baseline, treatment achieved marked improvement in seven survivors, leading to effect sizes comparable to those obtained by therapist-delivered treatment. Self-help appears to be a promising approach in cost-effective survivor care.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Cognitive Behavioral Therapy / methods*
  • Disasters*
  • Earthquakes*
  • Fear
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Health Behavior*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Personality Inventory
  • Stress Disorders, Post-Traumatic / therapy*
  • Survivors*
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Young Adult