In a preliminary assessment of 139 traumatized teenagers in Kosovo, The Center for Mind-Body Medicine finds that survivors of war recover from PTSD with the same sorts of mind-body training used with great success with cancer patients.. Jim Gordon’s team from The Center for Mind-Body Medicine in Washington DC offers a preliminary evaluation of their extraordinary program in Kosovo, helping traumatized, teenaged survivors of war recover from PTSD with the same sorts of mind-body training that this center uses with great success with cancer patients.

The study examines whether the practice of mind-body techniques decreases symptoms of posttraumatic stress in adolescents. Posttraumatic Stress Reaction Index questionnaires were collected from 139 high school students in Kosovo who participated in a 6-week program that included meditation, biofeedback, drawings, autogenic training (similar to the Relaxation Response), guided imagery, genograms, movement, and breathing techniques.

Three separate programs were held approximately 2 months apart. There was no control group.

Posttraumatic stress scores significantly decreased after participation in the programs. These scores remained decreased in the 2 groups that participated in the follow-up study, when compared to pretest measures. These data indicate that mind-body skills groups were effective in reducing posttraumatic stress symptoms in war-traumatized high school students.

Citation: Gordon JS, Staples JK, Blyta A, Bytyqi M. Treatment of posttraumatic stress disorder in postwar Kosovo high school students using mind-body skills groups: a pilot study. Journal of Traumatic Stress. 2004 Apr;17 (2): pages 143-7. [email protected]