Interplay between service era, PTSD symptom expression, and treatment completion among veterans

Wilson Brown, Rebecca G. Knapp, Ronald E. Acierno, Anouk L. Grubaugh

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


The current veteran population has grown significantly as a result of 3 recent major conflicts: Vietnam, Persian Gulf War, and Operation Enduring Freedom/Operation Iraqi Freedom (OEF/OIF). Despite a strong presence in VA PTSD specialty clinics nationwide, little is known about how these veteran cohort groups differ in PTSD symptom presentation. Additionally, it is unclear how variations in PTSD symptom presentation may in turn affect treatment adherence and completion. Understanding factors associated with treatment dropout from exposure-based therapy for PTSD is an important area of study, as individuals who drop out of treatment are likely to remain symptomatic and experience significant impairment across a number of psychosocial domains. The present study examined the relationship between service theater affiliation and pretreatment symptom expression as predictors of treatment completion in a sample of 164 veterans. Although treatment completion did not differ by service era, study data revealed statistically significant differences in initial PTSD symptom expression. Implications of the results and future directions are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)418-428
Number of pages11
JournalMilitary Psychology
Issue number6
StatePublished - Nov 1 2016

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • General Psychology


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