Efficacy of eye ovement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR) for post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD): The single, 5-6 hour session
In 2008, the Institute of Medicine called for “more efficient adaptations of standard psychotherapy” (p. 153) treatments for post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), emphasizing fewer, more frequent treatment sessions. Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) has been consistently shown to be not only efficacious but efficient in resolving PTSD symptoms (c.f. Shapiro, 1989a). Indeed, in both meta-analyses and single study comparisons of cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) and EMDR, EMDR resolved PTSD symptoms as effectively but often more quickly than the gold-standard CBT (c.f. Jaberghaderi et al., 2004; Van Etten & Taylor, 1998). Given EMDR’s noted efficiency, the researchers sought to determine whether a single, intensive EMDR session could provide relief from PTSD symptoms. The model for the procedure was drawn from Barabasz and colleagues’ (2011, 2012, 2013) highly successful application of abreactive ego state therapy in a single, 5-6 hour session. Twenty participants were assigned, in balanced order, to receive either EMDR or relaxation- therapy active control treatment. Efficacy was measured at pre-treatment, post-treatment, 1 and 3 months follow-up using the PTSD Checklist, Civilian version (PCL-C; Weathers, 1993). A 2 (group) x 4 (time) mixed ANOVA with planned contrasts and simple effects analyses as well as a Pearson chisquare test were applied to the data. Participants in the EMDR group improved significantly the course of the study, with 100% in the EMDR group no longer meeting diagnostic criteria for PTSD as defined by the PCL-C at 3 month follow-up, as compared to only 30% in the control group. There were also significant main effects of time and group, suggesting that on average the EMDR group improved more rapidly and to a greater degree than did the control group.
Original Work Citation
Bruna, L. J. (2014). Efficacy of eye ovement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR) for post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD): The single, 5-6 hour session. (Dissertation, Washington State University)
“Efficacy of eye ovement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR) for post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD): The single, 5-6 hour session,” Francine Shapiro Library, accessed June 23, 2021, https://emdria.omeka.net/items/show/24556.