An open-label, randomized controlled trial of the reconsolidation of traumatic memories protocol (RTM) in military women

Psychol Trauma. 2021 Sep;13(6):641-651. doi: 10.1037/tra0000986. Epub 2020 Nov 19.


Objective: PTSD in female veterans and service members (SMs) is understudied, and new, effective treatments for PTSD are needed. Reconsolidation of Traumatic Memories (RTM) is a brief, manualized treatment for PTSD previously piloted in RCTs of male veterans and SMs. Here we examine RTM's effect on military women with PTSD. Method: We report a waitlist RCT using 30 military-connected females with DSM-IV-TR PTSD diagnoses, including current-month nightmares or flashbacks. Trauma types include military sexual trauma, other sexual traumas, combat, and other trauma types. Participants were randomized to treatment or waitlist. Of those enrolled, 97% completed treatment. Independent psychometricians, blinded to treatment condition, evaluated participants at intake, postwait, and two weeks post. The clinician took follow-up measures at six months and one year. The primary measure was the PTSD Symptom Scale-Interview (PSS-I). The secondary measure was the PTSD Checklist. Participants received up to three 120-min sessions of RTM. Results: RTM eliminated intrusive symptoms and significantly decreased symptom scale ratings in 90% (n = 27) of participants, versus 0% of controls (p < .001). Two-week treatment group PSS-I scores dropped 33.9 points versus 3.9 points for postwait controls (g = 3.7; 95% CI [2.5, 4.8]; p < .001). Treatment results were stable to 1 year. Conclusions: RTM effectively treated PTSD, independent of trauma source in female SMs and veterans effectively replicating previous results in male populations. Further research is recommended. (PsycInfo Database Record (c) 2022 APA, all rights reserved).

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial Protocol

MeSH terms

  • Dreams
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Military Personnel*
  • Randomized Controlled Trials as Topic
  • Stress Disorders, Post-Traumatic* / therapy
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Veterans*

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