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Keywords:

  • EMDR;
  • trauma;
  • disaster

Abstract

Controlled studies of treatments effective with victims of natural disasters are almost nonexistent. This is a small study conducted under difficult conditions to test the effectiveness of Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) in treating trauma related reactions following Hurricane Andrew. The results were positive in that EMDR produced significant improvement over wait list controls in perceived posttraumatic avoidance behaviors and thoughts as measured by changes in the Impact of Event Scale and significant improvement in subjective aversive reactions to representative experiences of the hurricane. These results suggest and support other studies that EMDR can be an effective therapeutic intervention for trauma reactions.