Novel and controversial treatments for trauma-related stress disorders


The purpose of this chapter is to critically examine novel or controversial interventions for psychological trauma and its sequelae. Because the field of trauma treatment has recently witnessed a substantial increase in unusual treatments with questionable claims of efficacy, careful scrutiny of these treatments is warranted. We begin by discussing psychological trauma and its prevalence. We next describe the symptoms of PTSD, and discuss data concerning the risk of developing this disorder following a trauma. We outline current cognitive-behavioral theories of PTSD, and describe empirically supported treatments based on such theories. Finally, we describe a number of novel and controversial trauma interventions, including eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR), thought field therapy (TFT), and critical incident stress debriefing (CISD). We examine the theoretical and empirical bases of these three treatments and discuss the implications of their promotion for the field of clinical psychology.


Book Section




Jeffrey M. Lohr
Wayne Hooke
Richard Gist
David F. Tolin

Original Work Citation

Lohr, J. M., Hooke, W., Gist, R., & Tolin, D. F. (2003). Novel and controversial treatments for trauma-related stress disorders. In S. O Lilienfeld, S. J. Lynn, & J. M.Lohr, (Eds.), Science and pseudoscience in clinical psychology (pp. 243-272). New York, NY: Guilford Press



“Novel and controversial treatments for trauma-related stress disorders,” Francine Shapiro Library, accessed October 29, 2020,

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