Intervening early with EMDR on military operations: A case study


The U.K. armed forces are currently involved in a number of military operations throughout the world. Offering structured psychological interventions such as eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR) in theater has a number of potential advantages. This single-case study describes how the EMDR recent event protocol (Shapiro, 1995) was used in theater with a 27-year-old active-duty U.K. soldier who was experiencing an acute stress reaction after treating a land mine casualty. The intervention took place 2 weeks posttrauma with four sessions conducted on consecutive days, resulting in a positive outcome, with the soldier able to return immediately to frontline duties. Treatment response was assessed with administration of four standardized measures at pretreatment, posttreatment, and 18-month follow-up. Treatment effects remained at 18-month follow-up. The challenges of conducting EMDR in operational theaters and clinical implications are explored.






Matthew Wesson
Matthew Gould

Original Work Citation

Wesson, M., & Gould, M. (2009). Intervening early with EMDR on military operations: A case study. Journal of EMDR Practice and Research, 3(2), 91-97. doi:10.1891/1933-3196.3.2.91



“Intervening early with EMDR on military operations: A case study,” Francine Shapiro Library, accessed May 12, 2021,

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