Optimising mental health and quality of life for Australia’s military personnel and veterans with PTSD

23 Dec 2016

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The RESTORE trial is now recruiting volunteers

Do you believe you may have developed PTSD during or after your military service?

If so, you may like to consider participating in a new treatment trial – the RESTORE trial (i.e., Rapid Exposure Supporting Trauma Recovery). This trial will be conducted from four sites: Veterans and Veterans Families Counselling Service (VVCS) offices in Brisbane and Sydney, the ADF Centre for Mental Health in Sydney, and Phoenix Australia in Melbourne.

This trial will investigate whether an intensive delivery of prolonged exposure therapy, involving 10 sessions over a two week period, will deliver outcomes which are comparable to standard prolonged exposure treatment. Early evidence suggests that intensive exposure therapy is as effective as the standard approach, but to date there have been no rigorous studies comparing the effectiveness of the two options in a real-world clinical setting.

What is the RESTORE trial?

This research is investigating one of the most effective treatments for PTSD – prolonged exposure. Prolonged exposure therapy is a gold standard evidence-based treatment for PTSD. In its current form it requires weekly treatment for 10 weeks. However, this period of time can be difficult for ex-serving ADF personnel to commit to.

We want to see whether a new intensive form (daily sessions for two weeks) is as effective as the standard form (one session a week for 10 weeks).

What will the RESTORE trial involve?

If you are eligible for the trial, you will be allocated randomly to one of two groups. You will need to make a commitment to attend all 10 treatment sessions (either weekly or daily, depending on the group you are allocated to). Each session will be of 90 minutes duration. In both groups, high quality treatment will be delivered by experienced clinicians. There will be no cost for the treatment you receive in the trial.

How do I sign up?

If you would like to participate, please contact the Trial Intake Officer on: 1800 856 824
Or register your interest via email.

Why is the RESTORE trial important?

Over one million Australians a year suffer from PTSD, and current and ex-serving military personnel are affected at higher rates than the general community.

PTSD is a seriously disabling condition which can cause high levels of distress, problems in relationships with family and friends, a reduced ability to work, as well as high long-term healthcare costs.

We know prolonged exposure therapy is an effective treatment, but we also know that veterans may be unable to allocate the 10 weeks required for treatment. If we can achieve the same benefits in two weeks of intensive treatment, it will make prolonged exposure more accessible for those who need it.

What are the benefits?

We hope you will see an improvement in your PTSD symptoms and your quality of life. In addition, you will be helping the broader military and veteran community both in Australia and overseas by improving our understanding of effective treatments.

Who is conducting the RESTORE trial?

Phoenix Australia – Centre for Posttraumatic Mental Health is conducting this randomised controlled trial of prolonged exposure therapy for PTSD. The trial is funded by the National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC), Department of Veterans’ Affairs and the Department of Defence, in partnership with VVCS.