PTSD Treatment Guides

Over recent years, several organizations have created guidelines for the treatment of various disorders, including PTSD, dissociation, and related issues. This page collects links to online versions of treatment guides relevent to emotional trauma issues, as these guides may be helpful for some clinicians.

In addition, please note that the Disaster page includes a section of links to disaster mental health (DMH) guides, primarily of interest to disaster workers. While DMH guides focus on issues pertinent in disaster areas (and for individuals in crisis), they may also be useful for clinicians dealing with patients in crisis. In either case, please explore the disaster mental health guides as well as the treatment guides listed below.

I present these guidelines for the treatment of trauma-related disorders with some reservations.  Current stress research misses some fundamental defensive responses to traumatizing experiences.  These autonomic defense states likely underlie several trauma-related disorders and their varied symptoms.  Certainly, the efficacy of treatments for trauma-related disorders need to be evaluated, but such assessments need to consider all defense states elicited by stress and trauma.  As I have recently written, this is not currently the case: "Note that no 'evidence-based' psychotherapeutic approach for trauma-related disorders has been evaluated for its efficacy in treating defense states.  Hence, none can show evidence of efficacy with specific defenses" (Baldwin, 2013). 

Acute Stress Treatment Guides

Practice Guideline for the Treatment of Patients with Acute Stress Disorder and Posttraumatic Stress Disorder
This guideline, by Robert Ursano et al., was published in the American Journal of Psychiatry, 2004.
Mapping the Multidimensional Picture of Acute Reponses to Traumatic Stress  
A PDF article by Arieh Shalev and Robert Ursano discusses issues surrounding provision of early treatment for trauma (disaster) victims.

PTSD Treatment Guides

NICE Treatment Guideline: PTSD (2005)
The UK's NICE clinical guide on PTSD covers management of adults in primary, secondary & community care; multiple documents available.
NICE Treatment Guide: Borderline Personality Disorder: Treatment and Management (2009)
The UK's NICE guide for the management of borderline personality disorder, published in 2009.
VA/DoD: PTSD Clinical Practice Guidelines (2003)
From the VA's Office of Quality Performance, a clinical practice guide for PTSD.
Expert Consensus Guide:  Treatment of Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (1999)
Useful guidance for PTSD treatment by Foa et al., published in the Journal of Clinical Psychiatry, 1999.
Effective Treatments for PTSD: practice guidelines from the International Society for Traumatic Stress Studies (2000)
Foa, E., Keane, T. & Friedman, M. (Eds.) NY: Guilford Press.
Trauma Treatment Manual
Ed Schmookler's excellent treatment manual, initially written for Bosnia, applies to most disasters. Now posted at this site.

Dissociation Treatment Guides

Guidelines for Treatment of DID (MPD) in Adults (2011)
ISSTD's 2011 guidelines for treating Dissociative Identity Disorder (or MPD) in adults.
Guidelines for Treating Dissociative Symptoms in Children (2003)
ISSTD's 2003 guidelines for evaluating and assessing dissociative symptoms in children and adolescents.

General Treatment Guides

National Guideline Clearinghouse
A US government site containing treatment guidelines for a variety of disorders.  You can search and compare multiple guides.
SAMHSA: National Registry of Evidence-based Programs and Practices
NREPP is a searchable online registry of over 300 interventions for mental health treatment.  This is not an exhaustive list.
This site contains useful and easy to read guides for a varaiety of disorders, including PTSD, as well as guides for patients & families.