Pilot evaluation of hypnotic medication during acute traumatic stress response

Thomas A. Mellman, Patricia M. Byers, Jeffrey S. Augenstein

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

52 Scopus citations


Early intervention aimed at secondary prevention is a high priority for posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) research. Disrupted sleep may have a role in the initiation and maintenance of PTSD. Three of the participants were recruited from a surgical trauma service, and one had sought treatment in a psychiatric setting. All were within 1-3 weeks of trauma exposure and had acute PTSD symptoms that included disturbed sleep. Temazepam, a benzodiazepine hypnotic, was administered for 5 nights, tapered for 2 nights, and then discontinued. Evaluations 1-week after the medication had been discontinued revealed improved sleep and reduced PTSD severity. These observations suggest an approach that may be clinically useful and a need for more systematic trials.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)563-569
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Traumatic Stress
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1998


  • Acute
  • Hypnotic medication
  • Posttraumatic stress disorder
  • Sleep

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Psychology(all)
  • Clinical Psychology


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