International Society for Traumatic Stress Studies


Shattering the 2002 meeting attendance record, 1,277 attendees from around the globe helped make the ISTSS 22nd Annual Meeting a resounding success. Participants from all facets of the traumatic stress field traveled to the Renaissance Hollywood Hotel in Hollywood, Calif., from November 4-7, to meet colleagues, share ideas and learn from leaders in the field.

This year's theme, "The Psychobiology of Trauma and Resilience Across the Lifespan," allowed for a broad range of presentations focusing on the treatment and impact of traumatic stress. The theme also illustrated ISTSS's commitment to share the knowledge and experience of leaders in the traumatic stress field, and assist in propelling trauma research and practice forward.

Avshalom Capsi, PhD, and Terrie E. Moffitt, PhD, officially kicked off the proceedings with their keynote, "Gene x Environment Interactions in Mental Health." The address was well-received, and set the tone for the remainder of the program.

Recent and ongoing conflicts in Iraq, Lebanon and elsewhere provided the impetus for a number of sessions focusing on the traumatic effects of war, including:
  • Promoting Resiliency in Combat Service Returnees: Epidemiology and Early Intervention
  • Resilience, Recovery and Intervention Efforts for Veterans Returning from Iraq and Afghanistan
  • Post-Deployment Interventions to Reduce the Mental Health Impact of Combat Deployment to Iraq
  • Promoting Mental Health Reilience in War-Affected Youth: Planning and Implementng Interventions

As a special feature, the critically acclaimed Iraq War documentary, "The War Tapes" was screened, free of charge for attendees, in the Hollywood Ballroom on November 5.

Presentations centering around similar themes were conveniently grouped together in "tracks," allowing attendees to easily find multiple sessions on similar subjects. Some of the tracks included were "A Focus on Biological," "A Focus on Clinical," "Assessment," "Child," and "Resilience."

Plenary presentations, educational sessions, poster presentations, case studies, symposiums and panel discussions filled the four-day schedule. In addtion, Pre-Meeting Institutes held November 4 provided specialized training for clinicians and researchers. The full-day and half-day sessions featured topics such as, "Basic Trauma-Focused CBT Training," and "How to Treat Panic, Phobias and OCD in Trauma Survivors."

The success of the meeting was largely due to the energy, enthusiasm and effort of 2006 conference co-chairs Sandro Galea and Lucy Berliner. ISTSS also extends thanks to supporters of the 2006 meeting: Lundbeck, the National Institute of Mental Health, Sepracor and Wyeth Pharmaceuticals.

Comprehensive MP3 CDs featuring audio recordings of every session at the meeting are available for purchase now on the ISTSS Web site.

Mark your calendars now for the 23rd Annual Meeting, November 15-17, 2007, in Baltimore, Md. The meeting theme is "Preventing Trauma and its Effects: A Collaborative Agenda for Scientists, Practitioners, Advocates and Policy Makers." Pre-Meetng Institutes will take place November 14. 


                                                   What Attendees Said About the Meeting:

"The quality and variety of presentations were terrific!"

"As an undergraduate student, the highlight for me was the ability to meet speakers and discuss with them our mutual research interests, and to network with them in regard to graduate school. I was very impressed by this well-attended conference, and by how friendly and approachable the speakers were."

"Being a teacher for a number of years, I enjoyed being able to talk with clinicians about taking their theoretical findings and using them in the classroom to help my students."

"I felt at home with kindred spirits in the trauma field who are genuine empirically validated researchers and practitioners making a difference in the world."



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