Case report on the use of cognitive processing therapy–cognitive, enhanced to address heavy alcohol use


  • Elissa McCarthy, Department of Psychology, VA Connecticut Healthcare System; Ismene Petrakis, Department of Psychiatry, Yale University School of Medicine and VA Connecticut Healthcare System.

  • We gratefully acknowledge Dr. Greer Richardson for his ongoing consultation, support, supervision, and expertise in this project. Special appreciation is expressed to the Mental Illness Research, Education & Clinical Center at the West Haven VA, PTSD clinic at the West Haven VA, Ellen Edens, Elizabeth Ralevski, and Diana Limoncelli.


There is a high rate of co-occurring alcohol dependence (AD) in individuals with posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Cognitive processing therapy (CPT) is an effective treatment for individuals diagnosed with PTSD. CPT–Cognitive (CPT-C) is a modified form of CPT. This case report describes a 12-week course of CPT-C treatment, enhanced to address heavy alcohol use, in a combat veteran with PTSD and co-occurring AD. By treatment end, the veteran demonstrated clinically significant improvement in both PTSD symptoms and alcohol-related problems and sustained these gains 12-weeks posttreatment. The results indicate promise for the use of CPT-C, enhanced for heavy alcohol use, for individuals diagnosed with PTSD and AD.

Traditional and Simplified Chinese Abstracts by AsianSTSS

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