Display Settings:

Format

Send to:

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Biol Psychiatry. 2002 Jan 15;51(2):189-92.

Pilot study of secondary prevention of posttraumatic stress disorder with propranolol.

Author information

  • 1Department of Psychiatry, Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts 02129, USA.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Preclinical considerations suggest that treatment with a beta-adrenergic blocker following an acute psychologically traumatic event may reduce subsequent posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptoms. This pilot study addressed this hypothesis.

METHODS:

Patients were randomized to begin, within 6 hours of the event, a 10-day course of double-blind propranolol (n = 18) versus placebo (n = 23) 40 mg four times daily.

RESULTS:

The mean (SD) 1-month Clinician-Administered PTSD Scale (CAPS) score of 11 propranolol completers was 27.6 (15.7), with one outlier 5.2 SDs above the others' mean, and of 20 placebo completers, 35.5 (21.5), t = 1.1, df = 29, p =.15. Two propranolol patients' scores fell above, and nine below, the placebo group's median, p =.03 (sign test). Zero of eight propranolol, but six of 14 placebo, patients were physiologic responders during script-driven imagery of the traumatic event when tested 3 months afterward, p =.04 (all p values one-tailed).

CONCLUSIONS:

These pilot results suggest that acute, posttrauma propranolol may have a preventive effect on subsequent PTSD.

Comment in

PMID:
11822998
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

0 comments
How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Icon for Elsevier Science
    Loading ...
    Write to the Help Desk