The use of EMDR in abreaction


The role and management of abreaction, defined here as the reexperiencing of trauma in a therapeutic setting, is of particluar importance to clinicians treating patients with multiple personality disorder(MPD). Initial enthusiasm for the abreactive work waned after investigators recognized that patients can be retraumatized by intense abreaction and can decompenate clincially (Kluft). Still, mastery over past events is an essential element of recovery, so there is usually a need to titrate abreaction which results in a prolonged course of treatment. It will be suggested tha the use of EMDR can make abreactive work less painful and therefore has the potential to shorten treastment. This case supports the supposition that detoxifying and resolving traumatic memories is valuable in patients with MPD. Accordingly, it is suggested that the use of EMDR to manage abreaction in patients with MPD accelerates the treatment process, to the benefit of patient and clinician alike.






Steve Lazrove

Original Work Citation

Lazrove, S. (1993, October). The use of EMDR in abreaction. Presentation at the International Society for the Study of Dissociation 10th International Fall Conference, Chicago, IL



“The use of EMDR in abreaction,” Francine Shapiro Library, accessed August 2, 2021,

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