The purpose of this study is to compare two kinds of therapy for Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD): exposure therapy (ET) and Interpersonal Psychotherapy (IPT). The results of this study will allow us to see if IPT and ET are equally effective in treating PTSD due to Military Sexual Trauma, with the long-term goal of making PTSD treatment effective for as many people as possible.



Eligible Ages
Between 18 Years and 85 Years
Eligible Genders
Accepts Healthy Volunteers

Inclusion Criteria

  • English-speaking - Military Sexual Trauma (MST) survivors, with MST defined as actual or threatened sexual violence, from Vietnam era to current Operation Iraqi Freedom/Operation Enduring Freedom/Operation New Dawn - Diagnosed with PTSD consequent to MST, with a minimum CAPS score > 40 - Medically stable at time of study enrollment (for persons with chronic injuries and that any disability present does not prevent attendance of weekly outpatient therapy sessions) - Ability to provide informed consent and function at an intellectual level sufficient to allow accurate completion of all assessment instruments - Stable on psychotropic medication for the prior 60 days

Exclusion Criteria

  • Lifetime or current diagnosis of schizophrenia or other psychotic disorder, bipolar disorder - Participation in a clinical trial or concurrent evidence-based treatment for MST-related psychiatric conditions or PTSD during the previous 3 months - Current evidence of significant unstable medical illness or organic brain impairment such that the patient could not attend sessions regularly or complete assessments - Patients who in the investigator's judgment pose a current homicidal or suicidal risk - Current or history of substance dependence in the past 90 days.

Study Design

Study Type
Intervention Model
Parallel Assignment
Primary Purpose
Single (Outcomes Assessor)

Arm Groups

ArmDescriptionAssigned Intervention
Active Comparator
Exposure Therapy
Participants receive 10 90-minute exposure therapy sessions for PTSD following the treatment procedures as outlined in the standard Prolonged Exposure therapy manual.
  • Behavioral: Exposure Therapy
    Psychotherapy including imaginal and in vivo exposure for PTSD.
    Other names:
    • Prolonged Exposure
Active Comparator
Interpersonal Psychotherapy
Participants receive 14 weekly 50-minute Interpersonal Psychotherapy sessions focused on the interpersonal sequelae of trauma in current daily life.
  • Behavioral: Interpersonal Psychotherapy
    Psychotherapy that focuses on the effects of PTSD on current interpersonal functioning.

Recruiting Locations

More Details

Weill Medical College of Cornell University

Study Contact

Olivia Baryluk, BS


Study information shown on this site is derived from ClinicalTrials.gov (a public registry operated by the National Institutes of Health). The listing of studies provided is not certain to be all studies for which you might be eligible. Furthermore, study eligibility requirements can be difficult to understand and may change over time, so it is wise to speak with your medical care provider and individual research study teams when making decisions related to participation.