Student Case Joanne Case

Case Conceptualization

Student Case Joanne Case

  1. Problem Identification &amp Definition

Inthe current case scenario, Joanne is reportedly unable to move onwith his life following the death of her partner, Ann. Thisobservation is inferred from the fact that Joanne has not returned towork and is avoiding contact with relatives. While she has two adultsons, the client does not want to share the information with thembecause she thinks she will burden them with personal issues, andavoids dealing with legal paper issues associated with the death ofher partner. Joanne is also reported to ruminate about the relationwith the deceased, and regrets for having failed to appreciate her inthe times they stayed together.

Joanneis also reported to have changed her life in many ways. For instance,she no longer attends golf, the sport she is an avid fan since thedeath of her partner, and has developed a poor dieting habit.

  1. Contextual Considerations:

Twomajor contextual considerations are critical in drawing a treatmentplan. One of these critical considerations is that the client iselderly, over 60 years. Such an age is often characterized by certaincultural and health requirements that need to be considered toachieve a desirable outcome and which the treatment plan should betailored.

Anothercritical consideration is client’s health. Joanne is reported to besuffering from diabetes and hypertension. The treatment plan shouldbe developed in a way such that it also supports rather than worsenclient’s health conditions.

  1. Diagnosis

AxisI:309.81 Posttraumatic Stress Disorder, Chronic

AxisII:296.3 Major Depressive Single Episode

AxisIII:V71.09No Diagnosis

AxisIV:Threat of job loss



Client’scondition can be diagnosed based on the DSMIV manual. Post-traumaticstress disorder is a disorder that stems from an event that istraumatic. The disorder may be characterized by severity thatendangers the lives of the victims, as well as that of those of theother people (Asnis,Henderson &amp Kohn, 2004).These are characteristic features exhibited by Joanne. She avoids herrelatives and friends, which implies that her life is in danger ofeven suicide. Her condition should be checked before it worsens.

  1. Theoretical Conceptualization

Thereare various modalities the disorder, ranging from psychotherapeuticinterventions and hypnosis to pharmacotherapy. Itis worth noting that the treatment of post-traumatic stress disorderentails the transformation of victims, making them become thesurvivors. This way, the traumatic feelings are resolved in a mannerthat is facilitated by the exploration of the experiences andproblems that could be considered as overwhelming to the victims(Fullerton&amp Ursano, 2004).It is also worth noting that avoidance is one of the factors that mayvictim’s further treatment. In this regard, the therapists mustalways put into considerations all kinds of information that could beomitted, and which are associated with such kinds of feelings.

Sufferingcan be minimized through avoidance. However, this only occurs on atemporary basis before the sufferings are aroused by the cues of thetrauma. Moreover, appropriate information is very pertinent in thetreatment of post-traumatic stress disorder. The preceding traumaticexperiences should always be put into consideration when dealing withthe current post-traumatic stress disorder incident.There are various modalities that are applied in the treatment ofpost-traumatic stress disorder. These include pharmacotherapy andcognitive- behavioral and psychotherapeutic approaches (Ursano &amp Freidman &amp Norwood, 2004).

  1. Treatment Plan

PresentingIssue #1: Psychotherapy

Strengths:fewphysiological side effects

Barriers:Lackof cooperation takes long to achieve outcomes

Goals:toeliminate symptoms and enable patient deal with stressing conditions

Interventions:Cognitive and behavioral approaches

Modality/ Duration: Cognitiveand behavioral approaches for 12 weeks

Measureof Progress: Ifno change in signs and symptoms, the modality should be considered

PresentingIssue #2:pharmacotherapy

Strengths:Achievesoutcomes within a short time, in less than 3 weeks.

Barriers:variousphysiological side effects

Goals:treatspost-traumatic stress disorder symptoms

Interventions:Sertraline(Zoloft), Paroxetine (Paxil) and Fluoxetine (Prozac) (Asnis,Henderson and Kohn, 2004).

Modality/ Duration: useof drugs for 3 week

Measureof Progress: Theprogress will be measured with respect to whether the outcomes havebeen achieved, as well whether there have been any evidence of sideeffect.


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UrsanoR, &amp Freidman M, Norwood, A. (2004). “Practice Guidelines forthe Treatments of Patients with Acute Stress Disorder andPosttraumatic Stress Disorder”. AmJ Psychiatry.3(11):3-31.