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COVID-19 Related

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Cognitive therapy for post-traumatic stress disorder following critical illness and intensive care unit admission

Hannah Murray, Nick Grey, Jennifer Wild, Emma Warnock-Parkes, Alice Kerr, David M. Clark and Anke Ehlers

The Cognitive Behaviour Therapist

Medical Journal

Media Originally for:

Critical Care Physicians, Former ICU Patients, Former ICU Patients' Family Members, Friends or Caregivers, Nurses and/or Other Critical Care Medical Professionals

Yes

Around a quarter of patients treated in intensive care units (ICUs) will develop symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Given the dramatic increase in ICU admissions during the COVID-19 pandemic, clinicians are likely to see a rise in post-ICU PTSD cases in the coming months. Post-ICU PTSD can present various challenges to clinicians, and no clinical guidelines have been published for delivering trauma-focused cognitive behavioural therapy with this population. In
this article, we describe how to use cognitive therapy for PTSD (CT-PTSD), a first line treatment for PTSD recommended by the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence. Using clinical case examples, we outline the key techniques involved in CT-PTSD, and describe their application to treating patients with PTSD following ICU.

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