Knaevelsrud, Christine, Wagner, Birgit, Karl, Anke and Mueller, Julia
New treatment approaches: integrating new media in the treatment of war and torture victims
Torture, 17, (2), .
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The diagnostic process and treatment of victims of war and torture is associated with a number of difficulties. This article will provide an overview of three different approaches on how the new media may be integrated into the treatment of survivors
of torture and war to face some of the challenges. Illiteracy is a common problem and makes it difficult to apply standardized psychological assessment procedures. Also, the majority of survivors of torture and war do not have access to any psychotherapeutic treatment due to geographical limitations or limitations concerning psychotherapeutic treatment capacity. Furthermore, chronic psychological disorders such as (complex) Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) are often seen
with comorbid chronic pain disorders, which present a therapeutic challenge. The Treatment Center for Torture Victims, Berlin, in cooperation with the University of Zurich, developed a number of approaches to address these challenges: 1) MultiCASI - to standardize the diagnostic process an audiovisual diagnostic tool was developed which allows illiterate individuals to answer standardized psychological questionnaires without the help of interpreters; 2) A virtual treatment center for posttraumatic stress disorder for traumatized patients in Iraq and other Arab speaking postconflict
countries; 3) Utility of Biofeedback (BF) in chronic (somatoform) pain and in traumatized patients: to address the chronic pain syndrome presented by most survivors, a biofeedback- supported cognitive-behavioral therapy approach was
developed and successfully tested in a pilot study.
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