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Case Reports in Psychiatry
Volume 2013 (2013), Article ID 197323, 8 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2013/197323
Case Report

Treatment of a Multitraumatized Tortured Refugee Needing an Interpreter with Exposure Therapy

Clinic for PTSD and Transcultural Psychiatry, Aarhus University Hospital, Skejbygaardsvej 13-17, 8240 Rissikov, Denmark

Received 14 December 2012; Accepted 3 January 2013

Academic Editors: N. Bass, T. Hyphantis, and E. Jönsson

Copyright © 2013 Bo Søndergaard Jensen. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

This paper described the application and feasibility of exposure therapy treatment (ET) for posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) in a multitraumatized tortured refugee with chronic PTSD and depression, in need of an interpreter. The patient received 26 one-hour sessions of ET involving exposure to his trauma-related memories. Symptoms of PTSD, depression, and anxiety were assessed at pre- and posttreatment and 3-, 6-, and 12-month followup with the Harvard Trauma Questionnaire (HTQ-R), PTSD Symptom Scale-Self Report (PSS-SR), Major depression inventory (MDI), and Beck Anxiety Inventory (BAI). Treatment led to a significant improvement across all measures of posttraumatic stress disorder, anxiety, and depression, and the improvement was maintained at the 12-month follow-up. The results from this case study provide further preliminary evidence that ET may be effective in treating multi-traumatized torture survivors who are refugees and in need of an interpreter, despite the additional stressors and symptoms complexity experienced by tortured refugees.