Acupressure and Stress Resilience

This study is ongoing, but not recruiting participants.
University of Colorado, Boulder
Information provided by (Responsible Party):
Lisa Brenner, VA Eastern Colorado Health Care System Identifier:
First received: June 5, 2012
Last updated: January 22, 2015
Last verified: January 2015

The current study will assess the efficacy of acupressure, a type of complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) in the Veteran population. Veterans with co-occurring mild traumatic brain injury (mTBI) and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) will be consented and randomly assigned to either an active or placebo acupressure treatment series of 8 sessions. The investigators will determine if acupressure affects aspects of day-to-day function, such as memory, sleep, mood, psychiatric health and stress resilience. This information will help identify potential treatment strategies to improve quality of life and overall function in this particular Veteran population.

Condition Intervention
Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
Mild Traumatic Brain Injury (mTBI)
Other: Active Acupressure Treatment
Other: Placebo Acupressure Treatment

Study Type: Interventional
Study Design: Allocation: Randomized
Endpoint Classification: Efficacy Study
Intervention Model: Parallel Assignment
Masking: Double Blind (Subject, Investigator)
Primary Purpose: Treatment
Official Title: Using Complementary and Alternative Medicine (CAM) to Promote Stress Resilience in Those With Co-Occurring Mild TBI and PTSD

Resource links provided by NLM:

Further study details as provided by VA Eastern Colorado Health Care System:

Primary Outcome Measures:
  • Trier Social Stress Test [ Time Frame: 72 hours post final acupressure treatment ] [ Designated as safety issue: No ]

Estimated Enrollment: 80
Study Start Date: June 2012
Estimated Study Completion Date: January 2016
Estimated Primary Completion Date: January 2016 (Final data collection date for primary outcome measure)
Arms Assigned Interventions
Active Comparator: Acupressure Treatment Other: Active Acupressure Treatment
Participant will receive 8 active acupressure treatments.
Placebo Comparator: Placebo Acupressure Treatment Other: Placebo Acupressure Treatment
Participants will receive 8 placebo acupressure treatments.


Ages Eligible for Study:   18 Years to 60 Years
Genders Eligible for Study:   Both
Accepts Healthy Volunteers:   No

Inclusion Criteria:

  • Between the ages of 18-60
  • Diagnosis of mild TBI and PTSD as assessed by interview and/or chart review
  • Currently receiving or eligible to receive physical and/or mental healthcare through the VA Eastern Colorado Health Care System

Exclusion Criteria:

  • History of other significant neurological disease (e.g., Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, multiple sclerosis etc.) as assessed by interview and/or chart review. Such conditions could affect outcome measures independently, thereby creating an experimental confound.
  • History or diagnosis of lifetime moderate to severe TBI, as assessed by interview and/or chart review.
  • History of psychotic disorder or bipolar I disorder as assessed by structured interview. Such conditions could affect outcome measures independently, thereby creating an experimental confound.
  • Inability to read the informed consent document or adequately respond to questions regarding the informed consent procedure.
  • Prior experience with acupressure, as this would result in individuals potentially being able to detect Placebo treatments if randomly assigned to that group.
  Contacts and Locations
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Please refer to this study by its identifier: NCT01614444

United States, Colorado
Denver VAMC
Denver, Colorado, United States, 80220
Sponsors and Collaborators
VA Eastern Colorado Health Care System
University of Colorado, Boulder
Principal Investigator: Theresa D Hernandez, Ph.D. Senior Investigator and Research Psychologist Eastern Colorado Healthcare System, VISN19, MIRECC
Principal Investigator: Lisa A Brenner, Ph.D. Eastern Colorado Healthcare System VISN 19 MIRECC Director
  More Information

No publications provided

Responsible Party: Lisa Brenner, Director of MIRECC (Mental Illness Research, Education and Clinical Center, VA Eastern Colorado Health Care System Identifier: NCT01614444     History of Changes
Other Study ID Numbers: COMIRB# 12-0452
Study First Received: June 5, 2012
Last Updated: January 22, 2015
Health Authority: United States: Federal Government

Additional relevant MeSH terms:
Brain Concussion
Brain Injuries
Stress Disorders, Post-Traumatic
Stress Disorders, Traumatic
Anxiety Disorders
Brain Diseases
Central Nervous System Diseases
Craniocerebral Trauma
Head Injuries, Closed
Mental Disorders
Nervous System Diseases
Trauma, Nervous System
Wounds and Injuries
Wounds, Nonpenetrating processed this record on September 01, 2015