Combining the trauma film and fear conditioning paradigms: A theoretical review and meta-analysis with relevance to PTSD.

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Date: May 2022
Publisher: Elsevier Science Publishers
Document Type: Report; Brief article
Length: 268 words

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Abstract :

Keywords Stress disorders; Post-traumatic; Conditioning; Classical; Fear; Memory; Learning Highlights * Intrusive memories of trauma are believed to relate to associative learning. * Studies have begun to test the relationship between intrusions and conditioning. * Film clips in fear conditioning are mostly effective compared to electrical stimuli. * Meta-analysis shows differential skin conductance responses are lower with clips. Abstract A growing literature has sought to combine fear conditioning paradigms with the trauma film paradigm to study the associative learning properties of intrusive re-experiencing in PTSD. We review this innovative approach and the recent findings by highlighting their relevance to cognitive and conditioning theories of PTSD. We also conduct a meta-analysis of the available studies to demonstrate that, for most outcome measures, fear learning using a traumatic film clip unconditional stimulus yields results similar to those seen with an electro-tactile unconditional stimulus, which implies that the combined paradigm shares at least some properties of more standard fear conditioning paradigms. We argue that careful use of this combined paradigm will provide important new insights into the mechanisms underlying memory symptoms of PTSD and will allow rigorous testing of cognitive theories of the disorder. Author Affiliation: (a) School of Psychology and Counselling, Queensland University of Technology, Australia (b) School of Psychological Sciences, University of Tasmania, Australia (c) Department of Psychology, University of Melbourne, Australia (d) School of Psychology, Curtin University, Australia * Corresponding author. School of Psychology and Counselling, Queensland University of Technology, Australia. Article History: Received 15 November 2021; Revised 9 March 2022; Accepted 15 March 2022 Byline: Luke J. Ney [luke.ney@qut.edu.au] (a,b,*), Maya Schenker (c), Ottmar V. Lipp (a,d)

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Gale Document Number: GALE|A699667858