EMDR and bipolar disorder


Backgrounds and aims:
Exposure to childhood adversity is highly suggestive for increasing the risk of the diagnosis of bipolar disorder in later adulthood. Bipolar patients are also particularly prone to be exposed to traumatic events due to consequences of affective episodes which influence negatively the course of the disease. In clinical routine with bipolar patients, trauma aspects are largley ignored so far and not taken into consideration in the individualized treatment plan. This workshop aims to create awarness of this issue.

A first randomized, controlled study in traumatized bipolar subjects revealed positive effects of EMDR in this population. As consequence, we published a Bipolar EMDR Therapy Protocol which is currently tested in a large randomized controlled trial.

As first results are promising, the state of art of bipolar disorder and the problems in its managment are briefly demonstrated int his workshop. Furthermore, the new Bipolar EMDR Therapy Protocol and its 5 sub-protocols with cases and vídeos will be used to show possibilities and pitfalls in this complex population.

EMDR is an interesting and innovative candidate to adrdess psychological trauma in bipolar disorder.






Benedikt Amann

Original Work Citation

Amann, B. (2019, June). EMDR and bipolar disorder. Presentation at the 20th EMDR Europe Association Conference, Krakow, Poland



“EMDR and bipolar disorder,” Francine Shapiro Library, accessed October 28, 2020, https://emdria.omeka.net/items/show/25682.

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