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This study presents secondary analyses of a recently published trial in which post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) patients with psychosis (n = 108) underwent 8 sessions of trauma-focused treatment, either prolonged exposure (PE) or eye movement desensitisation and reprocessing (EMDR) therapy. 24.1% fulfilled the criteria for the dissociative subtype, a newly introduced PTSD subtype in DSM-5. Treatment outcome was compared for patients with and without the dissociative subtype of PTSD. Patients with the dissociative subtype of PTSD showed large reductions in clinician-administered PTSD scale (CAPS) score, comparable with patients without the dissociative subtype of PTSD. It is concluded that even in a population with severe mental illness, patients with the dissociative subtype of PTSD do benefit from trauma-focused treatments without a pre-phase of emotion regulation skill training and should not be excluded from these treatments.
Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is highly prevalent in patients with a psychotic disorder. Because a PTSD diagnosis is often missed in patients with psychosis in routine care, a valid screening instrument could be helpful.
To determine the validity of the Trauma Screening Questionnaire (TSQ) as a screening tool for PTSD among individuals with psychotic disorders.
Among 2608 patients with a psychotic disorder, the rate of trauma exposure was determined and the TSQ was administered to screen for PTSD. PTSD status was verified in 455 patients using the Clinician-Administered PTSD Scale (trial registration: ISRCTN 79584912).
Trauma exposure was reported by 78.2% of the 2608 patients. PTSD prevalence was estimated at 16% (95% CI 14.6–17.4%) compared with 0.5% reported in the patients' clinical charts. A TSQ cut-off score of six predicted PTSD with 78.8% sensitivity, 75.6% specificity, 44.5% correct positives and 93.6% correct negatives.
The TSQ seems to be a valid screening tool for PTSD in patients with a psychotic disorder.