EMDR & psychosis


Psychotic phenomena are one of the most challenging clinical presentations to treat, the most severe form being schizophrenia and poor outcome schizoaffective disorder. Schizophrenia is a severe enduring mental illness (SMI) and is characterised by core disturbances of thinking, perceptions and the emotions. It is accepted as having a heavy burden, with significant effects on the patient, their families and carers and it is one of the most costly illnesses worldwide. The weight of burden falls with regard to legal problems, stigma and life expectancy: life expectancy in this group of individuals is reduced by 10 years, mostly as a consequence of suicide (Rossler, Salize et al. 2005). Despite more than 100 years of experience of the disease it is still only a minority of individuals who make a full recovery. This workshop aims to give further insight into the role of EMDR in the treatment of schizophrenia - as defined by the genetic epidemiological work by Professor K Kendler (Kendler, Spitzer et al. 1989; Kendler, McGuire et al. 1993; Kendler, Maguire et al. 1993). It follows up a series of three patients with psychosis treated with EMDR one of whom met strict criteria for schizophrenia. All 3 are now over 2 years post-EMDR. Of specific note the man who presented with schizophrenia remains free of medication and symptoms. The workshop will discuss the role of EMDR in the treatment of psychosis, including schizophrenia and discuss case selection and protocol development in this area of practice.






Paul Miller

Original Work Citation

Miller, P. (2010, March). EMDR & psychosis. Presentation at the 8th EMDR Association UK & Ireland Annual Conference & AGM, Dublin, Ireland



“EMDR & psychosis,” Francine Shapiro Library, accessed June 14, 2021, https://emdria.omeka.net/items/show/19908.

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