Center for the Study of Traumatic Stress

The Center for the Study of Traumatic Stress (CSTS) was established in 1987 to address United States Department of Defense concerns around the psychological impact and health consequences resulting from the impact of traumatic events, to include weapons of mass destruction, terrorism, and natural disasters.

Mission: Advancing Psychological Health and Resilience through Trauma Research, Education, and Consultation

The 2018 Annual Report has arrived! Senior Program Manager, Paul Hurwitz (pictured below) has led the development of our annual reports for the past several years. Read the online version here --> https://www.cstsonline.org/assets/media/documents/CSTS_2018_AR_Final_Web_20190408.pdf

ncbi.nlm.nih.gov

Treatment of military-related post-traumatic stress disorder: challenges, innovations, and the way forward. - PubMed - NCBI

Newly published article with our international collaborators focusing on the treatment of military-related PTSD --> https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/31043106

ncbi.nlm.nih.gov Int Rev Psychiatry. 2019 May 2:1-16. doi: 10.1080/09540261.2019.1595545. [Epub ahead of print]

This past Monday was CAPT James "Curt" West's retirement ceremony from the Navy. CAPT West originally hails from Grosse Pointe, Michigan. He earned a bachelor's degree in aerospace engineering from the United States Naval Academy in 1989. He served eight years as a submarine warfare officer in the Navy, serving as a division officer aboard USS NORFOLK (SSN 714) and as a Company Officer at the Naval Academy. 

Dr. West earned his M.D. from the University of Michigan Medical School in 2001 and completed residency training in psychiatry at Naval Medical Center Portsmouth, Virginia in 2005. His first assignment was to First Marine Division as Operational Stress Control and Readiness (OSCAR) psychiatrist in Camp Pendleton, California. During that tour, he deployed to Iraq in 2006, providing direct care to Marine infantry battalions. In 2008 he reported to National Naval Medical Center, Bethesda, Maryland as department chief of behavioral health and served as part of the leadership team integrating with Walter Reed Army Medical Center. In 2010, he deployed to Afghanistan as Combat and Operational Stress Control Officer. Upon his return, he served as Assistant Deputy Commander and acting Deputy Commander of Behavioral Health at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center until 2013.

CAPT West joined the USU Department of Psychiatry in 2013 as an Assistant Professor where he assumed duties as the Psychiatry Clerkship Director and successfully guided the clerkship through the transition to the new curriculum. As a scientist at the Center, he pursued clinical research in multiple trials for the treatment of PTSD. He has authored multiple articles, book chapters and presented at numerous national and international meetings.

Thank you for your 34 years of service in our Nation's Navy! We're looking forward to having you back as a civilian!

This past Monday was CAPT James "Curt" West's retirement ceremony from the Navy. CAPT West originally hails from Grosse Pointe, Michigan. He earned a bachelor's degree in aerospace engineering from the United States Naval Academy in 1989. He served eight years as a submarine warfare officer in the Navy, serving as a division officer aboard USS NORFOLK (SSN 714) and as a Company Officer at the Naval Academy.

Dr. West earned his M.D. from the University of Michigan Medical School in 2001 and completed residency training in psychiatry at Naval Medical Center Portsmouth, Virginia in 2005. His first assignment was to First Marine Division as Operational Stress Control and Readiness (OSCAR) psychiatrist in Camp Pendleton, California. During that tour, he deployed to Iraq in 2006, providing direct care to Marine infantry battalions. In 2008 he reported to National Naval Medical Center, Bethesda, Maryland as department chief of behavioral health and served as part of the leadership team integrating with Walter Reed Army Medical Center. In 2010, he deployed to Afghanistan as Combat and Operational Stress Control Officer. Upon his return, he served as Assistant Deputy Commander and acting Deputy Commander of Behavioral Health at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center until 2013.

CAPT West joined the USU Department of Psychiatry in 2013 as an Assistant Professor where he assumed duties as the Psychiatry Clerkship Director and successfully guided the clerkship through the transition to the new curriculum. As a scientist at the Center, he pursued clinical research in multiple trials for the treatment of PTSD. He has authored multiple articles, book chapters and presented at numerous national and international meetings.

Thank you for your 34 years of service in our Nation's Navy! We're looking forward to having you back as a civilian!

Research Assistants play an important role in supporting the research at the Center, and are provided with opportunities to learn by working closely with CSTS Scientists. They helped develop a number of posters that were presented at yesterday's Amygdala Conference!

amygdalaptsdconference.org

Speakers

Dr. Irwin Lucki of Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences is presenting the last presentation of the day focused on effect of ketamine in the treatment of depression

For a full list of today's speakers and bios go to http://www.amygdalaptsdconference.org/speakers

amygdalaptsdconference.org Speakers Dennis S. Charney Anne Germain Jessica M. Gill James L. Griffith Irwin Lucki Moderators Wendi...

"There are layers of adversities day in and day out" - beginnings of Dr. James Griffith of The George Washington University School of Medicine & Health Sciences talk focused on treatment of chronic stressors and the importance for hope in treatment

Dr. Cassandra Pattinson of the National Institute of Nursing Research kicks off our afternoon sessions with her presentation on gene-activity and proteins that are associated with chronic PTSD symptoms

[04/16/19]   The Resilience Prescription (from Dr. Charney)

1) Positive Attitude
2) Cognitive Flexibility through Cognitive Reappraisal
3) Embrace a Personal Moral Compass
4) Find a Resilient Role Model
5) Face Your Fears
6) Develop Active Coping Skills
7) Establish and Nurture a Supportive Social Network
8) Attend to Physical Well-being
9) Train Regularly and Rigorously in Multiple Areas
10) Recognize, Utilize & Foster Signature Strengths

Dr. Dennis Charney, Dean of Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, and survivor of violent crime himself, is our next speaker and is presenting on resilience within the context of trauma

"When you remove sleep, there are functional consequences none of which are very good," - Dr. Anne Germain of @UPitt is our first speaker of the day & is highlighting the importance of sleep in readiness and resilience.

[04/16/19]   Challenge for today's conference is to help us get better in taking care of our patients including our 150,000 deployed OCONUS - important words from Dr. Richard Thomas, President of Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences

Today is the 14TH Annual Amygdala, Stress & PTSD Conference: Risk, Resilience & Recovery! See you there!

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Today is the LAST DAY to register for the 2019 Amygdala, Stress & PTSD Conference! Don't miss out on the chance to listen to an outstanding group of scientists and clinicians. Registration is free! http://www.amygdalaptsdconference.org/

amygdalaptsdconference.org April 16, 2019 Sanford Auditorium & Lobby, Building BUniformed Services University,...

cstsonline.org

April is the Month of the Military Child

Children grow and thrive in loving and safe homes. The challenges military families face while serving the nation can interfere with parents’ ability to provide for the changing and complex needs of their children. In recognition of April as the Month of the Military Child, our goal is to raise awareness among community service providers of military programs that strengthen military families. See the newly created fact sheet here: https://www.cstsonline.org/whats-new/april-month-of-the-military-child

cstsonline.org

amygdalaptsdconference.org

Agenda

ONE WEEK LEFT to register for the 2019 Amygdala Conference! The Program has just been release - take a look at our agenda, speakers and poster abstracts --> http://www.amygdalaptsdconference.org/agenda

amygdalaptsdconference.org Click here to download the full program 0800-0900: Registration and Poster...

cstsonline.org

Joining Forces Joining Families, Spring 2019

Exposure of children to intimate partner violence (IPV) is an important and potentially overlooked form of child maltreatment. The Spring 2019 issue of Joining Forces Joining Families newsletter focuses on the subject of children exposed to IPV. We feature an interview with two noted researchers in the area of child maltreatment, Melissa Kimber, PhD, and Harriet MacMillan, MD, both of McMaster University in Ontario, Canada. Other features of this edition are a brief literature review on children exposed, police responses to IPV when children are present, and websites providing resources on the topic -->https://www.cstsonline.org/resources/resource-master-list/joining-forces-joining-families-spring-2019

cstsonline.org This issue of Joining Forces Joining Families (JFJF) features an interview with Melissa Kimber and Harriet MacMillan on...

U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs

Dr. Stephen Cozza just wrote a blog post for the VA on the Stepping Forward in Grief Study! Check it out below!

You can participate in the study if you are a close friend, unit member, battle buddy, or a family member of someone who died at any time while serving in the military or as a result of their military service. For instance, this would include:

- Any immediate family member – such as a parent, spouse, sibling or adult child
- Any non-immediate family member – such as a cousin, grandparent, uncle, or aunt
- Any close friend or battle buddy of a military service member who died while serving or after discharge due to a duty-related cause.

The Stepping Forward in Grief Study is testing two online/app programs that were developed in response to findings from the National Military Family Bereavement Study, which suggested that grief-related challenges among bereaved military survivors can continue, even many years following a loss, and that many survivors desire additional support

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9 DAYS LEFT to register for the 14th Annual Amygdala, Stress, and PTSD Conference on April 16th! http://www.amygdalaptsdconference.org/

amygdalaptsdconference.org April 16, 2019 Sanford Auditorium & Lobby, Building BUniformed Services University,...

johnpmayhugh.org

2nd Annual Hero's Journey Symposium — John P Mayhugh Foundation

During yesterday's John P. Mayhugh Foundation 's 2nd Annual Heroes Journey Home Symposium, Dr. Cozza presented, "Pathways of Risk and Recovery in Military Families," and Dr. Morganstein presented during the panel "Science, Technology, Research". The event, attended by dozens of public and private sector entities, congressional staffers and members of Congress, brings national attention to issues of trauma, mental health, and substance use, in both military and civilian populations. http://johnpmayhugh.org/2019-symposium

johnpmayhugh.org The Hero’s Journey Symposium will be comprised of facilitated panel discussions and a closing synthesis session.  The panel discussions will bring together wide array of stakeholders, including brain health researchers, physicians, military leaders, public policy experts, and community advocates....

bmcresnotes.biomedcentral.com

Internal consistency and factor structure of a brief scale assessing sensitivity to blood, injury, and mutilation

NEW: Just published research note by Dr. Oscar Gonzalez et al. in BMC, available via Open Access --> https://bmcresnotes.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s13104-019-4200-9

bmcresnotes.biomedcentral.com US Army soldiers and military veterans experience high rates of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). However, PTSD risk factors are not fully understood. Sensitivity to blood, injury, and mutilation (SBIM), which includes fear of being injured, seeing another person injured, and exposure to mutila...

steppingforwardstudy.org

Home | Stepping Forward in Grief

Grief can feel overwhelming, especially for battle buddies, unit members and close friends of those who died while serving or as a result of their military service. Anyone grieving the death of a service member who died before, on, or after 9/11/2001 can sign up to participate in a study testing two apps developed to assist with grief and loss. Participation is free and your voice can make a difference. Review study criteria today and sign up!

LINK: http://steppingforwardstudy.org/

steppingforwardstudy.org Stepping Forward in Grief (SFG) is a study that develops and tests an innovative, mobile and web guide-supported application designed to promote adaptation to loss, as well as encourage grief integration in a geographically-dispersed community of military families and friends who have experienced lo...

podcast.ausa.org

Family Voices: Transition, Loss & Military Kids with Dr. Stephen Cozza

Need a podcast for your evening commute? We recommend this 20 min podcast from AUSA's Army Matters Podcast featuring Dr. Stephen Cozza --> https://podcast.ausa.org/e/family-voices-transition-loss-military-kids-with-dr-stephen-cozza/

podcast.ausa.org Children born into military families face an assortment of adventures and challenges. Frequent moves, making new friends, repeated separations from the military parent, to name a few. In addition, military families can face the trauma of having a service m...

amygdalaptsdconference.org

Poster Session

The upcoming 14th Annual Amygdala, Stress, and PTSD Conference: Risk, Resilience, and Recovery is accepting poster submissions! There is NO registration fee associated with poster submission or presentation. Deadline for poster submissions is this Friday, March 22nd!

For more info on poster submissions go to http://www.amygdalaptsdconference.org/posters

amygdalaptsdconference.org The 2019 Amygdala, Stress and PTSD Conference is an excellent opportunity to present the results of your work to a...

Last week, Dr. Quinn Biggs and Dr. Jing Wang presented posters at the 40th Annual Meeting of the Society for Behavioral Medicine. Have a look!

cstsonline.org

March is Brain Injury Awareness Month

March is Brain Injury Awareness Month. In support of the Department of Defense’s effort to increase awareness of traumatic brain injury (TBI), the Center for the Study of Traumatic Stress will distribute information and resources to educate and support the community on issues of TBI. The following page will be updated throughout the month with links and resources: https://www.cstsonline.org/resources/resource-master-list/march-is-brain-injury-awareness-month

cstsonline.org March is Brain Injury Awareness Month. In support of the Department of Defense’s effort to increase awareness of...

steppingforwardstudy.org

Home | Stepping Forward in Grief

We are pleased to announce that participation in the Stepping Forward in Grief Study has expanded!

We will continue to include post-9/11 families, but the study is now open to those who lost a service member serving in the military BEFORE September 11, 2001.

In addition, we are also EXPANDING the study to include close friends and non-immediate family members, as well as immediate family members.

This means the study will now be open to close friends and family members of those who died before or after September 11, 2001 while serving in the military or as a result of their military service. For instance, this would include:

- Any immediate family member - such as a parent, spouse, sibling or adult child

- Any non-immediate family member - such as a cousin, grandparent, uncle, or aunt

- Any close friend or battle buddy of an active duty service member who died while serving

You can get involved and help by:
- Enrolling in the study yourself.
- Telling others about the study.

We know that many gold star family members and friends continue to struggle with grief for many years after experiencing a loss. To improve resources for the bereaved, the study is testing the effectiveness of two apps designed to help bereaved individuals. https://steppingforwardstudy.org/

steppingforwardstudy.org

nhlbi.nih.gov

NHLBI Working Group: The Cardiovascular Consequences of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder | National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI)

Dr. Robert Ursano was a participant in the NHLBI workshop, “The Cardiovascular Consequences of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder,” held this past November 13-14, 2018. The workshop gathered leading experts in basic, translational, clinical, and population research in cardiovascular disease (CVD), post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and neuroscience, as well as representatives of multiple federal and non-federal agencies and academic institutions. Their charge was to identify the highest priority research gaps and make recommendations for future research strategies to address these gaps, with a specific focus on the following objectives:

-To foster the interdisciplinary exchange of ideas evaluating the latest evidence of increased risk of CVD development and progression in individuals with PTSD and biological mechanisms of this risk.
-To identify research gaps and opportunities in the available knowledge, technology, and research tools to enable future research in this area.
- To develop recommendations for the immediate and longer-term research priorities within the mission of NHLBI.

Read the Executive Summary here: https://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/events/2018/nhlbi-working-group-cardiovascular-consequences-post-traumatic-stress-disorder

nhlbi.nih.gov PTSD is associated with an increased risk of CVD events, including coronary heart disease, heart failure, and stroke. It is also associated with CVD risk factors such as hypertension and diabetes, and with accelerated progression of CVD, particularly heart failure.

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