Here is some of the information I recently shared in the May newsletter. Each newsletter has a specific focus.  This newsletter is focused on PTSD. If you would be interested in receiving my newsletters, which include links to the studies as well as special offers and sales coupons, please head over to my contact page and sign up.


  1. Giving thanks lowers PTSD severity
  2. The role of self-control demands
  3. Association of C-reactive Protein genetic variations on symptoms
  4. Aerobic exercise effects on women with and without PTSD
  5. Massage decreases stress for Veterans with PTSD
  6. Reuptake inhibitors affect MDMA-assisted psychotherapy
  7. Bright Light Treatment for combat related PTSD
  8. Functional neuroimaging in PTSD
  9. Is EMDR effective as treatment for PTSD?
  1. Book titled: In the Aftermath of the Pandemic
  2. World Health Organization includes PTSD and complex PTSD in ICD-11


1. A research paper, published in Oct 2020 titled Giving Thanks is Associated with Lower PTSD Severity: A Meta-Analytic Review in Journal of Happiness Studies, found a a moderate negative relationship between gratitude and PTSD severity

2.  A study titled Posttraumatic Stress Disorder and Conduct Problems: The Role of self-control demands, published in Journal of Traumatic Stress in Oct 2020, concluded: dysregulated behavior may, ironically, stem from individuals’ concerted efforts to control and manage overwhelming symptoms. Self-control demands may be a common factor that accounts for a broad range of functional impairments associated with PTSD.

3. A study titled Association of CRP genetic variation with symptomatology, cognitive function, and circulating pro inflammatory markers in civilian women with PTSD, published in Journal of Affective Disorders in Jan 2021, explored the association of C-reactive Protein genetic variations with blood pro-inflmmatory protein levels, symptomatology, and cognitive function, and further explored the moderating effect of childhood maltreatment history, in adult patients with PTSD. The results revealed a significant genotype by treatment interaction for more severe PTSD avoidance symptoms.

4. A study titled Aerobic exercise reduces anxiety and fear ratings to threat and increases circulating endocannabinoids in women with and without PTSD, published in Mental Health and Physical Activity in Nov 2020, concluded: 1) aerobic exercise reduced anxiety and fear ratings to unpredictable and predictable threats 2) circulating concentrations of endocannabinoids increased following aerobic exercise 3) mood states improved following aerobic exercise in women with PTSD, 4) aerobic exercise exerts psychological benefits in women with PTSD.

5. A research article titled Veterans with Post-traumatic Stress Disorder are Less Stressed Following Massage Therapy, published in Current Research in Complementary & Alternative Medicine in Aug 2020, concluded: the massage group had lower PTSD scores, fewer sleep disturbances, and expressed less intent of self-harm. In a follow-up one moth later, the massage group was no longer showing the improvement noted at the end of the study, although they continued to express less intent of self-harm. This highlights immediate positive effects of massage on memory, stress and heart rate and long-term effects on PTSD symptoms, sleep, and self-harm ideation. The absence of follow-up effects highlights the importance of continuing massage therapy (stimulation of pressure receptors) for these positive effects to persist.

6. A study titled Discontinution of medications classified as reuptake inhibitors affects treatment response of MDMA-assisted psychotherapy, published in Psychopharmacology, concluded: recent exposure to antidepressant drugs that target reuptake transporters may reduce treatment response o MDMA-assisted psychotherapy.

7. An study titled Bright Light Treatment of Combat-Related PTSD: A randomized Controlled Trial, published in Military Medicine in Jan 2021, concluded: short-term efficacy of bright light treatment on the primary variables (Clinician Assessed PTSD Scale and Clinical Global Impressions Scale) with clinical relevance (i.e.e, treatment response) in veterans with chronic PTSD who did not report extremely high habitual light exposure. No significant effects were found for anxiety, depression, or sleep disturbance.

8.  An article, published in The American Journal of Psychiatry in February 2021, titled Functional Neuroimaging in PTSD: From Discovery of Underlying Mechanisms to Addressing Diagnostic Heterogeneity proposes: The cause of limited treatment efficacy in PTSD may lie not only in the treatments themselves but in the heterogeneity within the diagnosis of PTSD. PTSD is currently defined by exposure to a wide variety of traumatic events and by a broad constellation of physical, affective, behavioral, and cognitive symptoms. Improving the diagnostic specificity of PTSD would yield more homogeneous patient samples and increase the likelihood of identifying clinically meaningful neurobiological markers, which could in turn serve as objective, measurable targets for novel and specific treatments. In trying to address the problem, functional neuroimaging studies have become central to efforts to characterize neural markers of PTSD.

9. A study titled Is EMDR Effective in Treatment of PTSD? published in Family Physicians Inquiries Network, Inc in 2021 concludes: In adults with post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR) appears as effective as the standard of care (trauma-based cognitive behavioral therapy [CBT]) in improving PTSD. EMDR may be minimally to moderately superior to CBT in decreasing intrusion, arousal, anxiety, and post traumatic symptoms of PTSD.



  1.  There is a new book by John C. Markowitz titled In the Aftermath of the Pandemic: Interpersonal Psychotherapy for Anxiety, Depression, and PTSD, published by Oxford Press in 2021. It is available as an e-book or paperback from Google books, Amazon, Barnes & Noble, IndieBound, and Books-A-Million and runs from $14.60 to $29.99.
  2. The World Health Organization (WHO) ICD-11 now includes a distinction between the diagnoses of PTSD and complex PTSD (CPTSD). Several studies have indicated that this distinction is reliable and valid across various treatment services, communities and nations….The inclusion of a trauma-focused intervention is a common factor in the most successful treatments for PTSD symptoms. It is expected that as compared to PTSD, CPTSD may require a longer course of treatment and/or benefit from a greater diversity or type of interventions which include a focus on disturbances in self-organization.

Here is some of the information I recently shared in an October newsletter. Each newsletter has a specific focus.  This newsletter is focused on PTSD and trauma. If you would be interested in receiving my newsletters, please head over to my contact page and sign up.


  1. Survivors of COVID-19 at risk of PTSD
  2. Metabolic connectivity PET study on EMDR efficiency
  3. Systematic review of effects of online EMDR
  4. Self-administered EMDR therapy for PTSD
  5. Complex PTSD separate condition from PTSD
  6. Centrality and Posttraumatic Stress Disorder symptoms
  7. New blood tests may give more accurate PTSD diagnoses
  8. Chronic inflammation removes motivation
  9. MDMA-assisted psychotherapy for PTSD
  10. Neuromuscular fatigue and PTSD


I receive a weekly update on anything published on the internet that includes information about PTSD and trauma.  I try to glean the best of the information and provide a brief synopsis of the information. If you come across any information that you think would be good to share, please also feel free to pass that information along to:

1. A commentary, published in Global Health Research and Policy in Jun 2020 titled Survivors of COVID-19 are at high risk of post-traumatic stress disorder suggests: Exposure to infectious disease epidemics results in a particular type of psychological trauma, which could be categorized into three groups. The first is directly experiencing and suffering from the symptoms and traumatic treatment. The second is witnessing of patients who suffer from, struggle against, and die of the infectious disease, which has a direct impact on fellow patients, family members of patients, or people who directly provide aids and care for the patients. The third is experiencing the realistic or unrealistic fear of infection, social isolation, exclusion, and stigmatization which directly affects patients, family members, care and help providers, or even the general public….With considerations of the already large and still increasing number of people exposed to the current COVID-10, we believe it urgent to provide mental health service targeted at prevention of PTSD to survivors and other people exposed to COVID-19. Possible strategies include, but are not limited to, health education, psycho-social support, counseling service to the general population, as well as early intervention, including psycho-social support, psychotherapies, and pharmacological treatments to vulnerable and high-risk groups.

2.  A study titled Involvement of the cerebellum in EMDR efficiency: a metabolic connectivity PET study in PTSD, published in European Journal of Psychotraumatology in 2020 concludes: The posterior cerebellum and its metabolic connectivity with the precuneus are involved in the clinical efficiency of EMDR in PTSD.

3. A systematic review titled PTSD treatment in times of COVID-19: a systematic review of the effects of online EMDR, published in Psychiatry Res in Aug 2020 concludes: only one trial was identified--an uncontrolled open trial which showed promising results.

4. A study titled Self-administered EMDR therapy: potential solution for expanding the availability of psychotherapy for PTSD or unregulated recipe for disaster? published in BJPsych Open in 2020 suggests:  There is emerging evidence that self-administered psychological therapies, such as those accessed via online and mobile applications, are efficacious for many mental illnesses and increase access to treatment. Online and mobile applications offering self-help tools for eye movement desensitization reprocessing (EMDR) therapy, an internationally recommended treatment for PTSD, are already widely distributed to the public.

5. A research article titled Focused treatment outcome for complex PTSD patients: results of an intensive treatment program published in European Journal of Psychotraumatology in 2020 explains that Complex PTSD has been incorporated in the 11th edition of the ICD-11 as a mental health condition distinct from PTSD and finds the majority of patients classified as having Complex PTSD strongly benefit from intensive trauma-focused treatment.

6. A study titled Change in Event Centrality and Posttraumatic Stress Disorder Symptoms During Intensive Treatment, published in Journal of Traumatic Stress in Jun 2020 suggests:  Event centrality, defined as the extent to which a traumatic event becomes a core component of a person’s identity, is both a correlate and predictor of post-traumatic stress disorder symptoms, over and above event severity. These findings suggest that decreasing the perceived centrality of a traumatic event to one’s identity might result in decreases in PTSD symptom severity.

7. An article published on The Veterans Site News, titled This New Blood Test May Give Veterans and Troops More Accurate PTSD Diagnoses offers some promise for those experiencing or likely to experience PTSD. “After six years of research, the Army’s Research Systems Biology and outside biometric studies have been able to identify a set of 27 blood markers that are related to the various symptoms of PTSD and they believe they may be able to develop simple blood tests that can help to identify specific treatments for patients who are currently exhibiting, or better diagnostic tools to identify those who might eventually exhibit, the symptoms of PTSD.”

8. An article, published in News Medical Life Sciences titled Chronic inflammation removes motivation by reducing dopamine in the brain summarizes a study published in Trends in Cognitive Sciences. Andrew Miller, co-author of the study, says, “If our theory is correct, then it could have a tremendous impact on treating cases of depression and other behavioral disorders that may be driven by inflammation. It would open up opportunities for the development of therapies that target energy utilization by immune cells, which would be something completely new in our field.”

9. A study titled Long-term follow-up outcomes of MDMA-assisted psychotherapy for treatment of PTSD: a longitudinal pooled analysis of six phase-2 trials, published in Psychopharmacology May 2020 concludes: PTSD symptoms were reduced 1 to 2 months after MDMA-assisted psychotherapy, and symptom improvement continued at least 12 months post-treatment. Phase 3 trials are investigating this novel treatment approach in a larger sample of participants with chronic PTSD.

10. A study titled Neurophysiological relationship of neuromuscular fatigue and stress disorder in PTSD patients, published in Journal of Bodywork and Movement Therapies in Aug 2020 concludes: stress disorders may affect the time to fatigue in PTSD patients and subsequently cause some difficulties in their daily life.


Here is some of the information I recently shared in my June newsletter. Each newsletter has a specific focus.  This month is focused on PTSD and trauma information. If you would be interested in receiving my newsletters, please head over to my contact page and sign up.


I receive a weekly update on anything published anywhere on the internet that includes information about PTSD and trauma.  I try to glean the best of the information and provide a brief synopsis of the information. If you come across any information that you think would be good to share, please also feel free to pass that information along to:

1. A powerful study titled Body-Oriented Therapy in Recovery from Child Sexual Abuse: An Efficacy Study, published in Altern Ther Health Med In July 2007 focused on the perceived influence on abuse recovery of body-oriented therapy. 24 adult females participated in a randomized study. Treatment consisted of 8 2 hour long massage sessions or 8 2 hour-long therapy sessions. The results suggest significant improvement on all outcome measures.

2.  An article, originally published in International Psychology Bulletin by Grant Rich, titled Massage Therapy for PTSD, Trauma, and Anxiety, gives numerous references to studies and metastudies on the effectiveness of massage for trauma, anxiety, and PTSD with a valuable reference list for the studies.

3.  A study titled Cortisone Decreases and Serotonin and Dopamine Increase Following Massage Therapy, published in 2005 in International Journal of Neuroscience, concludes: Significant decreases were noted in cortisol levels (averaging decreases 31%); the activating neurotransmitters (serotonin and dopamine) noted an average increase of 28% for serotonin and 31% for dopamine. This suggests the stress-affecting effect of massage therapy on a variety of medical conditions and stressful experiences (including PTSD) is beneficial.

4.  A study titled Alleviating post-traumatic stress in children following Hurricane Andrew, published in Journal of Applied Developmental Psychology in 1996, included 60 grade-school children who showed signs of severe post-traumatic stress. The children received massage on 8 days 1 month after the hurricane. The children reported being happier, less anxious, and had lower cortisol levels after therapy.

5.  A study in 2014 titled PTSD Symptom Reports of Patients Evaluated for the New Mexico Medical Cannabis Program, published in Journal of Psychoactive Drugs, concluded: Cannabis is associated with reductions in PTSD symptoms in some patients.

© 2020 Advanced Holistic Healing Arts 
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