An Interview with Barry Krakow, M.D., on PTSD and Sleep - Sleep Disorders
Initially trained as an internist and emergency room physician, Dr. Krakow's interest in treatment of sleep disturbances developed after he pursued an interest in medication side effects related to sleep problems. He has since become a sleep researcher, and runs a sleep clinic in Albuquerque, NM specialized in the treatment of sleep problems co-occurring with PTSD and other psychiatric disorders. Though PTSD is associated with nightmares, successful treatment of these nightmares does not necessarily improve sleep. Instead, PTSD (particularly long-term PTSD) often co-occurs with independently diagnosable and treatable sleep disorders including insomnia and apnea. His research suggests that many chronic insomnia patients also have undiagnosed apnea like conditions they are not aware of. He frequently prescribes an imagery technique for treatment of nightmares called Imagery Rehearsal Therapy or IRT.