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The purpose of the proposed research is to conduct a feasibility study of yoga as an adjunctive therapy for the treatment of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) in 15 military personnel at the Walter Reed Army Medical Center (WRAMC) in Washington, DC. Participants will complete 10 weeks of yoga training, in addition to the continuing their usual and customary care for PTSD at WRAMC. The style of yoga chosen for this study, Yoga Nidra, uses deep relaxation, deep breathing and meditation to systematically reduce physical, emotional, mental, and even subconscious tension. After a diagnostic mental health assessment at baseline, participants will attend a total of 18 classes taught over a 10-week period and will practice daily at home using a compact disk provided by the instructor. Baseline measures will include the Patient Health Questionnaire, PD-HAT Trauma Questions, PTSD Symptom Scale - Interview, Fear of Loss of Vigilance Scale, and expectation of efficacy. The primary outcome measure will be the PTSD Checklist. Changes in health status, locus of control, and pain will be assessed over the course of the study. An additional goal of this study is to gather preliminary data on the anticipated effect size and feasibility of conducting a larger clinical study of the adjunctive use of yoga for the treatment of PTSD symptoms in enlisted military personnel.
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Ages Eligible for Study:
18 Years and older (Adult, Senior)
Sexes Eligible for Study:
Accepts Healthy Volunteers:
Active Duty military personnel
Aged 18 and over
A minimum score of 40 on the Posttraumatic Stress Disorder Checklist (PCL-M), a brief, self-report instrument used to assess PTSD severity.
Active suicidal or homicidal ideation
Severe cognitive impairment or history of cognitive disorder
Serious surgical procedures within the last two months or planned
Treatment for refractory pain
New or dose adjusted psychotropic medication (i.e. SSRIs and anxiolytics) in last month
Unwilling or unable to practice Yoga Nidra at home