Involving a Significant Other in Treatment of Patients With PTSD Symptoms: A Systematic Review of Treatment Interventions

Trauma, Violence, & Abuse

Eline Meuleman, Mèlanie Sloover & Elisa van Ee


Previous studies have called for the inclusion of social support in the treatment of PTSD. The current review identifies interventions for adults with PTSD symptoms, which include a significant other as a source of social support. 11 articles focusing on eight interventions were found, including a total of 495 participants who had experienced trauma. These interventions were divided according to level of involvement of the significant other in treatment. Significant others were either passively or actively involved in the treatment. Preliminary results show that interventions actively involving a significant other in the treatment of the patient with posttraumatic stress symptoms were most effective in reducing PTSD symptoms. The current review provides recommendations for future research and suggests that significant others should be actively involved in the treatment of PTSD symptoms.

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