Treatment options for Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) are limited in terms of available drugs and the success of psychotherapeutic interventions. Oxytocin is a peptide involved in the modulation of social cognition, emotional skills and the reward system, all deficient in PTSD, and thus it has been suggested as a promising pharmacological target. In this systematic review, the potential effects of intranasal OT (INOT) administration on core symptoms in PTSD patients are discussed, as well as neurobiological correlates in functional imaging supporting its clinical evidence. The fourteen studies included in the present review provide tentative evidence that INOT could be a safe pharmacological intervention, although the results were mixed and insufficient to quantify the effectiveness of this intervention. Specifically, the primary outcome measures differed consistently between studies, and the sample sizes were usually small. Considering the neurobiological and clinical evidences, tentative hypotheses can be made on the possible role of INOT in facilitating socially- and goal-oriented cognition and behaviour, thus promoting a better therapeutic alliance and treatment outcome. Such strategies need to be further supported by literature. For instance, only one study to date has directly investigated the use of INOT as an augmentation strategy for psychotherapy (namely, Prolonged Exposure therapy) and for a limited time, nevertheless providing promising results for the efficacy and the medium-term tolerability of this drug after multiple administrations.

Intranasal oxytocin as a potential therapeutic strategy in post-traumatic stress disorder: A systematic review

Giovanna G.;Damiani S.;Fusar-Poli L.;Rocchetti M.;Brondino N.;de Cagna F.;Mori A.;Politi P.
2020

Abstract

Treatment options for Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) are limited in terms of available drugs and the success of psychotherapeutic interventions. Oxytocin is a peptide involved in the modulation of social cognition, emotional skills and the reward system, all deficient in PTSD, and thus it has been suggested as a promising pharmacological target. In this systematic review, the potential effects of intranasal OT (INOT) administration on core symptoms in PTSD patients are discussed, as well as neurobiological correlates in functional imaging supporting its clinical evidence. The fourteen studies included in the present review provide tentative evidence that INOT could be a safe pharmacological intervention, although the results were mixed and insufficient to quantify the effectiveness of this intervention. Specifically, the primary outcome measures differed consistently between studies, and the sample sizes were usually small. Considering the neurobiological and clinical evidences, tentative hypotheses can be made on the possible role of INOT in facilitating socially- and goal-oriented cognition and behaviour, thus promoting a better therapeutic alliance and treatment outcome. Such strategies need to be further supported by literature. For instance, only one study to date has directly investigated the use of INOT as an augmentation strategy for psychotherapy (namely, Prolonged Exposure therapy) and for a limited time, nevertheless providing promising results for the efficacy and the medium-term tolerability of this drug after multiple administrations.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11571/1337346
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