Module Five - Neurobiology of complex trauma and dissociative disorders and research update
5 - Neurobiology of complex trauma and dissociative disorders and research update
Content Level: Advanced
Contributors: Su Baker, MEd, Joan Turkus, MD, John O’Neil, MD
This module explores research on the neurobiology of trauma and dissociation, the validity of the diagnosis, as well as ongoing research into treatment of those with complex trauma and dissociative disorders. The high correlation between early and severe trauma and neglect in the developmental histories of people with complex posttraumatic and dissociative disorders has inspired much research into the underlying neurobiology. How do trauma and neglect during development affect normal neurobiology? How do genetics, developmental adversity, and their interaction (genetic expression – epigenetics) lead to different neurobiological pathways that ultimately give rise to various clinical expressions, such as complex posttraumatic pathology with and without significant dissociation, and the various dissociative disorders themselves? Research into treatment will focus especially on the TOP DD (Treatment of Patients with Dissociative Disorders) study, now past its 6th year of ongoing research. Specialized phasic, dissociation-focused treatment in this population has shown significant reductions in stressors, sexual revictimization, and psychiatric hospitalizations, and improved global functioning, safety, and quality of life.
- Describe how difference patterns of trauma and neglect give rise to different sets of neurodevelopmental effects
- Examine and discuss the research that underlines the validity of the diagnosis of DID
- Describe different neurobiological substrates of different categories of mental functioning across different diagnoses
- Discuss how treatment approaches to complex posttraumatic and dissociative pathologies may be statistically researched and tested
- Brand, B. L., McNary, S. W., Myrick, A. C., Classen, C., Lanius, R., Loewenstein, R. J., . . . Putnam, F. W. (2013). A longitudinal naturalistic study of patients with dissociative disorders treated by community clinicians. Psychological Trauma: Theory, Research, Practice, and Policy, 5(4), 301–308. doi:10.1037/a0027654
- Dorahy, M.J., Brand, B.L., Sar, V., Kruger, C., Stavropoulos, P., Martinez-Taboas, A., Lewis-Fernandez, R. and Middleton, W. (2014) Dissociative identity disorder: An empirical overview. Aust NZ J Psychiatry 48: 402-417.
- Frewen, P.A. and Lanius, R.A. (2014). Trauma-Related Altered States of Consciousness: Exploring the 4-D Model. Journal of Trauma & Dissociation, 15, 436–456.
- Lanius, R.A. (2015). Trauma-related dissociation and altered states of consciousness: a call for clinical, treatment, and neuroscience research. European Journal of Psychotraumatology, 6(1) 1-9
- Myrick, A.C., Webermann, A.R., Loewenstein, R.J., Lanius, R.A., Putnam, F.W. and Brand, B.L. (2017). Six-year follow-up of the treatment of patients with dissociative disorders study. European Journal of Psychotraumatology, 8, 1-7.
- Sar, V., Dorahy, M.J. and Kruger, C. (2017) Revisiting the etiological aspects of dissociative identity disorder: A biopsychosocial perspective. Psychology Research and Behavior Management 2017:10 137–146.
30 minutes: Discussion of Reading 6
30 minutes: Discussion of Reading 2
30 minutes: Discussion of Readings 3 and 4
30 minutes: Discussion of Readings 1 and 5
30 minutes: Discussion of student’s disguised cases, or further discussion of readings 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 and 6 if no case material available.
- 2.50 APAThe International Society for the Study of Trauma and Dissociation is approved by the American Psychological Association to sponsor continuing education for psychologists. The International Society for the Study of Trauma and Dissociation maintains responsibility for this program and its content.
- 2.50 ASWB ACEThe International Society for the Study of Trauma and Dissociation (ISSTD), #1744, is approved to offer social work continuing education by the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB) Approved Continuing Education (ACE) program. Organizations, not individual courses, are approved as ACE providers. State and provincial regulatory boards have the final authority to determine whether an individual course may be accepted for continuing education credit. ISSTD maintains responsibility for this course. ACE provider approval period: 08/20/2021 – 08/20/2024. Social workers completing this course receive 2.50 continuing education credits.
- 2.50 ISSTD Certificate ProgramThis program is eligible for 2.50 credits in the ISSTD Certificate Program.