Casey T Taft's research while affiliated with National Center for PTSD and other places

Publications (149)

Article
The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) recently implemented the Strength at Home (SAH) program to prevent and end use of IPV in Veterans. SAH is an evidence-based, trauma-informed, cognitive-behavioral intervention for Veterans who use, or are at risk for using, IPV. A previous pilot evaluation of implementation outcomes at 10 VA hospitals indicat...
Article
PTSD is associated with compromised parenting which is not adequately addressed in available evidence-based PTSD treatments. Strength at Home - Parents (SAHP) is a trauma-informed parenting intervention which aims to improve parenting behaviors and overall parent-child functioning. Here we report pilot data obtained in a sample of veterans (N=21) w...
Preprint
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Examinations of links between plant-based diet and indices of physical and mental health have received increased attention in the scientific literature in recent years. However, there has been little to no published research examining associations between plant-based diet and use of aggressive behavior. The current study examined the link between a...
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This study examined the inter-relationships among posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptoms, cognitive bias, executive functioning deficits, and intimate partner violence (IPV) outcomes in a sample of 104 military veterans who had served in conflicts in Afghanistan and Iraq. Veteran participants completed questionnaires, a neuropsychological as...
Article
Objective: Sexual aggression between intimate partners is a serious problem. This study examined this problem in returning male veterans and their female partners, and the effectiveness of an intervention for intimate partner violence (IPV) in preventing sexual aggression using data gathered during a randomized controlled trial. Method: Rates of...
Article
The Strength at Home (SAH) intervention, a trauma-informed, cognitive-behavioral intervention for intimate partner violence (IPV), was examined in a sample of court-mandated men. Evidence from prior research indicates that SAH is effective in military veterans but the program has not been examined in civilians. It was expected that SAH participants...
Chapter
Despite acknowledgment that trauma and trauma-related problems are among the strongest risk factors for intimate partner violence (IPV), development and dissemination of trauma-informed interventions for this problem has been slow relative to other areas of intervention. In this chapter, we review definitions of trauma that expand current diagnosti...
Article
Background Veterans report relatively high rates of intimate partner violence (IPV) due to high trauma exposure. Alcohol use disorder (AUD), which is more prevalent among veterans, is a risk factor for IPV use and recidivism following IPV intervention. Using data from a prior randomized control trial of a trauma-informed IPV intervention, we examin...
Article
Intimate partner violence (IPV) is a prevalent issue among veteran populations. Strength at Home (SAH) is a 12-week cognitive behavioral and trauma-informed group intervention shown to reduce IPV among veterans via a randomized controlled trial and several implementation and pilot studies. The program is currently being implemented nationally in th...
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Introduction Warzone participation is associated with increased risk of stress‐related psychopathology, including posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and depression. Prior research suggests that the mental health of spouses of warzone veterans (WZVs) is linked to that of their partners. Additionally, PTSD among WZVs has been associated with marita...
Article
A key challenge in the assessment of family variables is the discrepancies that arise between reports. Although prior research has observed levels of interpartner agreement on the family environment, no studies have investigated factors that may influence agreement. In this study, war zone veterans (WZVs) and their partners ( N = 207 couples) compl...
Article
One approach to understanding perpetration of intimate partner violence (IPV) by men focuses upon their childhood exposure to abuse or neglect as traumatic experiences, which may lead to PTSD symptoms; these symptoms can serve as risk factors for IPV perpetration. Another approach looks at the societal aspects of inequality between men and women as...
Article
High rates of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and comorbid substance use disorder (SUD) are prevalent in military veterans. However, few studies have investigated impulsivity as a risk factor for engaging in substance use behavior for individuals who are experiencing PTSD symptoms. The present study evaluated impulsivity as a moderator of the...
Article
Understanding factors associated with intimate partner violence (IPV) treatment attendance is of particular importance given high rates of attrition from IPV counseling programs. Individuals who drop out from IPV counseling remain at an increased risk for recidivism. Although numerous studies have examined correlates of IPV treatment completion in...
Chapter
Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) has been associated with intimate partner violence (IPV) across a range of populations. This chapter summarizes theoretical models attempting to explain these associations, with an emphasis on social information processing models that describe how trauma impacts the ways in which we interpret and process our soc...
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Background: The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) has recently implemented a comprehensive national program to help veterans who use or experience intimate partner violence (IPV). One important component of this plan is to implement Strength at Home (SAH), a 12-week cognitive-behavioral and trauma-informed group treatment designed to reduce...
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Objective: Anger is a symptom of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) associated with a range of clinical and functional impairments, and may be especially prevalent among veterans with PTSD. Effective anger management therapies exist but may be undermined by poor engagement or lack of treatment availability. Finding ways to engage veterans in an...
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Opinion Statement Despite a large and growing literature showing high rates of prior trauma exposure and posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) among those who engage in intimate partner violence (IPV), there has been a lack of trauma-informed interventions developed for this population. This review discusses the latest background research and clinic...
Article
Objective: This study sought to extend findings from a randomized controlled trial of the Strength at Home Men's Program (SAH-M) for intimate partner aggression (IPA) in military veterans by examining the impact of pretreatment posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptoms on treatment efficacy, and by examining new data on postintervention follow...
Article
Background: Women veterans may be at high risk for intimate partner violence (IPV), which increases susceptibility for negative physical and mental health. IPV experiences and use have not previously been studied among the newest generation of women veterans who deployed to the conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan. Method: This study examined the corr...
Article
Trauma and posttraumatic stress disorder have massive negative consequences; associated anger and aggression are particularly damaging. This overview focuses on these relationships and their potential mechanisms, and offers treatment considerations. Research and theory suggests that trauma impacts anger and aggression through social information pro...
Article
Objective: We evaluated the efficacy of Strength at Home Couples, a cognitive-behavioral trauma-informed intimate partner violence (IPV) preventive intervention for married or partnered military service members or veterans. No prior randomized controlled trial had supported the efficacy of such an intervention in this population. Method: Partici...
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Objective: This feasibility pilot study evaluated the usability of a mobile application (app), Remote Exercises for Learning Anger and Excitation Management (RELAX), as an adjunct to an anger management treatment delivered to Veterans. Methods: Four Veterans completed pre- and post-treatment measures of anger, post-traumatic stress disorder, dep...
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Objective: This study investigated sleep problems and physical pain as moderators of the relationship between PTSD symptoms and aggression among returning veterans. Prior research has demonstrated associations between PTSD symptoms and aggression, but little work has sought to identify moderators of this relationship. Sleep problems and physical p...
Article
Objective: Prior research indicates a connection between the experience of trauma and use of intimate partner aggression (IPA), but little work has focused on core cognitive schemas that can be influenced by trauma. In the current study, we examine the cognitive schema of mistrust in others as a mediator of the relationship between trauma exposure...
Article
This study examined social skills deficits as a mediator of the relationship between posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptoms and use of intimate partner aggression (IPA) among returning veterans. Prior research with veterans has focused on PTSD-related deficits at the decoding stage of McFall’s (1982) social information processing model, and...
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This study examined whether laboratory exposure to traumatic reminders potentiated the relationship between veterans’ posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptoms and intimate partner aggression (IPA) articulations elicited during an anger-induction task. The sample included 82 male Operation Iraqi Freedom/Operation Enduring Freedom veterans. The...
Article
Objective: We evaluated the efficacy of the Strength at Home Men's Program (SAH-M), a trauma-informed group intervention based on a social information processing model to end intimate partner violence (IPV) use in a sample of veterans/service members and their partners. To date, no randomized controlled trial has supported the efficacy of an IPV i...
Article
This study examined relationships between combat-exposed Operation Enduring Freedom/Operation Iraqi Freedom veterans' experiences related to infidelity during deployment (i.e., indicating that a partner was unfaithful or reporting concern about potential infidelity) and postdeployment mental health, as well as the role of subsequent stress exposure...
Article
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We examined social information processing factors that could represent pathways through which posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptoms relate to anger expression and intimate partner violence (IPV) perpetration in returning U.S. veterans. The sample included 92 male Operation Enduring Freedom/Operation Iraqi Freedom veterans, primarily Caucasi...
Article
Military deployment may adversely affect not only returning veterans, but their families, as well. As a result, researchers have increasingly focused on identifying risk and protective factors for successful family adaptation to war-zone deployment, re-integration of the returning veteran, and the longer-term psychosocial consequences of deployment...
Article
There is a growing literature investigating the connection between veterans' posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptoms and intimate relationship problems. Little to no work, however, has examined the connection between veterans' PTSD symptoms and their partners' perceptions of specific relationship areas in need of change. We examined associati...
Article
There is a dearth of empirical literature characterizing the various forms of trauma experienced by men court mandated to intervention for intimate partner violence (IPV) perpetration. We investigated the potentially traumatic events (PTEs) experienced by men (N = 217) court mandated to enroll in a 41-week group IPV perpetrator program, as well as...
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The problem of intimate partner violence (IPV) is increasingly being studied among military populations, although there is a dearth of research examining IPV perpetrated against male veterans by their female partners. Returning veterans and their partners face several unique difficulties, including psychological and relationship distress, which may...
Article
Intimate partner violence (IPV) is a significant concern among recently returning Veterans. In this paper, we discuss the etiology of IPV in this population and the intersections between Veteran healthcare and criminal justice system policies regarding Veteran IPV. We describe the current socio-political context in which clinical interventions and...
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The relationship between firearm violence and mental illness has been a longstanding issue, and one that has received recent national attention due to highly publicized shootings. However, no prior reviews have focused on the relationship between firearm violence and posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) specifically. The current review examines evi...
Article
This study examined associations between warzone exposures to combat with postdeployment relationship and family functioning in 134 women who deployed to the conflicts in Afghanistan and Iraq. Survey invitations were sent by mail to 600 randomly selected women who experienced recent military deployments and were residing in New England. The web-bas...
Article
Veteran and active duty populations evidence higher rates of intimate partner aggression (IPA) than comparable civilian groups, perhaps due in part to their unique service-related experiences. IPA offender treatment programs that take military background into consideration are not widely available, and it is unclear to what extent there is a percei...
Article
We examined intimate partner aggression (IPA) reporting concordance between veterans and their partners and investigated relationship satisfaction, posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptoms, and relationship attributions as correlates of IPA reporting discrepancies. The sample consisted of 239 veterans of different service eras and their intima...
Article
We evaluated the effectiveness of Strength at Home Friends and Families (SAH-F), a dyadic group intervention to prevent relational aggression and its negative consequences, in a community-based sample of service members/veterans and significant others who reported relational difficulties. Participants included 70 veterans and their loved ones. Recr...
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Background: Violence towards others in the community has been identified as a significant problem for a subset of Iraq and Afghanistan veterans. Aims: To investigate the extent to which post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and other risk factors predict future violent behaviour in military veterans. Method: A national, multiwave survey enroll...
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In this article, we report on a pilot study of Strength at Home-Couples (SAH-C), a 10-session cognitive-behavioral couples-based group intervention designed to prevent intimate partner violence (IPV) in military couples. The primary purposes of this pilot study were to determine feasibility of recruiting, retaining, and assessing SAH-C participants...
Article
Most veterans do not have psychiatric illness and do not have problems with domestic violence, but PTSD is a strong risk factor for intimate partner violence. Other risk factors include depression and substance use disorders, and the risk is compounded by the presence of several factors. Clinicians should screen for domestic violence among veterans...
Article
This study examined the associations between maladaptive dependency-related schemas, posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) hyperarousal symptoms, and intimate-partner psychological and physical aggression in a sample of court-referred men (N = 174) participating in a domestic-abuser-intervention program. The men were largely African American; averag...
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There is a growing research base focusing on intimate partner aggression (IPA) in combat veterans, although little work has focused on IPA assessment. In the current study, the authors investigated IPA assessment among 65 male Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF) and Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF) combat veterans and their female partners. Specifically,...
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The relationship between military combat and postdeployment family functioning difficulties has been frequently investigated in the literature, as has the relationship between types of coping and posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Few studies, however, have examined these variables together, and no studies of which we are aware have examined the...
Article
This study used structural equation modeling to evaluate a mediation model of the relationship between trauma exposure, posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptoms, and perpetration of intimate partner physical and psychological aggression in trauma-exposed veterans and their cohabitating spouses (n = 286 couples; 88% male veteran and female spou...
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In this brief report, we present information on the Strength at Home intervention to treat male active duty or military veteran perpetrators of intimate partner violence (IPV) as well as preliminary pilot study findings. Strength at Home is a 12-session cognitive-behavioral group intervention developed by the authors that is based on a social infor...
Article
Drawing from theoretical and empirical literature linking shame to aggression and violence, the authors propose that shame may be an important variable to examine in studies of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and intimate partner violence (IPV) perpetration. The authors review the literature linking shame, PTSD, and IPV, propose ideas for futu...
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Objective: We examined 4 separate dimensions of functional social support (tangible, appraisal, self-esteem, and belonging) as predictors of change in depression over 4.5 years in a sample of women reporting intimate partner violence. Method: Participants were recruited as they sought help for violence perpetrated by a current or former male par...
Article
Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptoms have consistently been associated with poorer health in highly traumatized samples. However, less is known about the relationship between PTSD symptoms, depressive symptoms, and health in nonclinical groups. Because exercise contributes to health, we hypothesized that PTSD symptoms and depressive sympto...
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Research has documented significant relationships between posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), aggression, and intimate partner violence (IPV). Most of these studies have focused on men and measured violence by self-report. This study examined (a) the association between PTSD and general aggression among women, (b) the association between IPV and...
Article
Careful attention to motivation for change may enhance the effects of interventions for partner-violent men. The present study tested predictions about differential response to a two-session motivational intake (MI) for partner-violent men, which was compared to a structured intake (SI) control. For those who were initially reluctant to change, MI...
Article
We examined the relationship between trauma exposure and the perpetration of aggression by male Vietnam veterans (N = 1,328) using archival data from a multisite study conducted by the Cooperative Studies Program of the Department of Veteran Affairs (CSP-334) in the early 1990s. Both traumatic events in civilian life and combat exposure were examin...
Article
The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) and Department of Defense's (DOD) recently published and updated Department of Veterans Affairs/Department of Defense VA/ DOD Clinical Practice Guideline for Management of PostTraumatic Stress includes irritability, severe agitation, and anger as specific symptoms that frequently co-occur with PTSD. For the f...
Article
Measures of head injury, executive functioning, and intelligence were given to a community sample composed of 102 male perpetrators of intimate partner aggression (IPA) and 62 nonaggressive men. A history of head injury and lower mean score on a measure of verbal intelligence were associated with the frequency of male-perpetrated physical IPA as re...
Article
Little research to date has examined intimate partner aggression perpetration among female veterans, despite the increasing number of women veterans and a greater focus on women's aggression in civilian sample investigations. The present study examined rates and correlates of physical and psychological intimate partner aggression in a sample of 89...
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This study longitudinally examined correlates of intimate partner psychological aggression in a sample of 178 men seeking treatment for alcoholism and their partners, building on a previous investigation examining correlates of intimate partner physical aggression (Taft et al., 2010). The men were largely Caucasian; average age was 41.0 years. Part...
Article
We examined correlates of intimate partner violence (IPV) in a military Veteran sample (N = 129) using Finkel's (2007) framework for understanding the interactions between impelling and disinhibiting risk factors. Correlates investigated included head contact events (HCEs), posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptoms, and antisocial features. Res...
Article
It has been well established that dating violence victimization is associated with various mental health problems. Relatively, little is known about similarities and differences between mental health correlates of dating violence victimization for males and females. We examined the associations between physical and psychological victimization exper...
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We examined gender-related attitudes as correlates of physical and psychological aggression perpetration and victimization among 325 undergraduate students in dating relationships. It was hypothesized that adversarial sexual beliefs and acceptance of interpersonal violence would be positively correlated with physical and psychological aggression pe...
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Despite evidence that the working alliance (WA) is an important factor in psychotherapy outcome and that race/ethnicity plays an important role in the processes of therapy, few studies have directly examined associations between WA and race/ethnicity. These relationships may be particularly salient for difficult-to-engage populations, such as men p...
Article
Low concordance of reports across partners has consistently been observed when partners report the frequency of intimate partner violence (IPV) and psychological aggression (PA) in their relationship. Researchers have been unsuccessful in the quest to discover systematic biases across reporters, perhaps due to examining constructs that are not the...
Article
Intimate partner violence (IPV) exposure was examined as a predictor of treatment engagement (i.e., starting and completing therapy) and treatment outcome in 150 women taking part in a dismantling study of cognitive processing therapy (CPT) for posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD; Resick et al., 2008). Results indicate that women in a current intim...
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Women may face particular challenges adjusting to the military environment, in part due to their numerical minority status in a traditionally male culture. In addition, women are more likely than men to experience the added stressor of sexual harassment. We examined several potential mediators of the relationship between gender-role egalitarianism...
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The authors conducted a meta-analysis of empirical studies investigating associations between indices of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and intimate relationship problems to empirically synthesize this literature. A literature search using PsycINFO, Medline, Published International Literature on Traumatic Stress (PILOTS), and Dissertation Abs...
Chapter
Intimate partner violence (IPV) is a public health problem in the United States that may be particularly elevated among military populations exposed to trauma who evidence symptoms of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). As this chapter illustrates, evidence indicates that the development of posttraumatic psychopathology, and particularly PTSD, is...
Article
This study examined the prevalence and correlates of partner aggression perpetration in 597 primary care chronic pain patients. Approximately 30% of participants reported perpetrating low-level aggression, 12% reported injuring their partner, and 5% reported engaging in sexual coercion. Women reported more low-level aggression perpetration than men...
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This study examined static and time-varying risk factors for perpetration of intimate partner violence (IPV) among men in treatment for alcohol use disorders. Participants were 178 men diagnosed with alcohol abuse or dependence and their partners. Most (85%) of the men were European American; their average age was 41.0 years. Participants completed...
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Using multilevel modeling, the authors examined the impact of antisocial personality characteristics on the effectiveness of cognitive behavioral anger management group treatment among 86 veterans with posttraumatic stress disorder. A wide range of forms of anger, as well as use of physical aggression, decreased during treatment. As predicted, anti...
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An extensive literature documents biological correlates of general aggression, but there has been less focus on biological correlates of intimate partner violence (IPV). The purpose of this review is to summarize the research literature to date that has reported on biological factors in IPV perpetration. We review the existing literature on four do...
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This study examined the role of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptoms with respect to dating aggression perpetration among a sample of 199 undergraduates. Almost one-third of the overall sample reported physical dating aggression perpetration in the past year, and approximately 80% reported engaging in psychological dating aggression. Struc...