The modifications of the EMDR protocol for sexually abused children


There is an increasing interest in using the procedures of EMDR with sexually abused children because of its effectiveness in treating PTSD and trauma in adults and children. Within the literature clinicians have reported modifications of the standard adult protocol originally developed by Shapiro in order to facilitate the therapy with children. To date, no study has investigated the actual modifications clinicians use when treating sexually abused children. A study was designed to elicit information about the actual use of such modifications from appropriately trained clinicians who work with sexually abused children 12 years and younger. A questionnaire was developed to obtain demographic information from therapists about their background and experience with abused children. An EMDR protocol modification survey was also created to elicit information about whether and how clinicians alter the standard EMDR protocol for use with abused children. Eight completed surveys were returned and the results of data analysis showed that clinicians do indeed modify the protocol as described and discussed. In particular, the results indicated the importance of modifications in the EMDR procedure for children and suggested important changes in the questionnaire that could be used for future data collection.






Heather Andonucci

Original Work Citation

Andonucci, H. (2004). The modifications of the EMDR protocol for sexually abused children. Dissertation Abstracts International: Section B: The Sciences and Engineering, 65(5-B), 2611



“The modifications of the EMDR protocol for sexually abused children,” Francine Shapiro Library, accessed April 14, 2021,

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