Efficacy of telehealth treatments for posttraumatic stress-related symptoms: A meta-analysis

Denise M. Sloan, Matthew W. Gallagher, Brian A. Feinstein, Daniel J. Lee, Genevieve M. Pruneau

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

66 Scopus citations


This meta-analysis summarizes the findings of outcome research on the degree to which telehealth treatments reduce posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD)-related symptoms. In a search of the literature, 13 studies were identified for inclusion in the meta-analysis and were coded for relevant variables. A total of 725 participants were included. Results indicate that telehealth treatments are associated with significant pre- to postreduction in PTSD symptoms (d = 0.99, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 0.87-1.11, p < .001), and result in superior treatment effects relative to a wait-list comparison condition (d = 1.01, 95% CI: 0.76-1.26, p < .001). However, no significant findings were obtained for telehealth intervention relative to a supportive counseling telehealth comparison condition (d = 0.11, 95% CI: 20.38 to 0.60, p =.67), and telehealth intervention produced an inferior outcome relative to a face-to-face intervention (d = -0.68, 95% CI: 20.39 to 20.98, p < .001). Findings for depression symptom severity outcome were generally consistent with those for PTSD outcome. Telehealth interventions produced a significant within-group effect size (d = 0.98, 95% CI: 0.86 to 1.10, p < .001) and superior effect relative to wait-list comparison condition (d = 0.80, 95% CI: 0.56-1.05, p < .001). Relative to face-to-face interventions, telehealth treatments produced comparable depression outcome effects (d = 0.13, 95% CI: 20.55 to 0.28, p =.53). Taken together, these findings support the use of telehealth treatments for individuals with PTSD-related symptoms.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)111-125
Number of pages15
JournalCognitive Behaviour Therapy
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2011


  • Cognitive behavior therapy
  • Computer-aided psychotherapy
  • Internet
  • Telehealth
  • Trauma

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Psychology


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