A Systematic Clinical Demonstration of Promising PTSD Treatment Approaches

Carbonell, Joyce L., and Figley, Charles, Florida State University.

Traumatology, 5:1, 1999.

Traumatic Incident Reduction, Visual-Kinesthetic Disassociation, Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing, and Thought Field Therapy were investigated through a systematic clinical demonstration (SCD) methodology. This methodology guides the examination, but does not test the effectiveness of clinical approaches.

Each approach was demonstrated by nationally recognized practitioners following a similar protocol, though their methods of treatment varied. A total of 39 research participants were treated and results showed that all four approaches had some immediate impact on clients and appear to also have some lasting impact. The paper also discusses the theoretical, clinical, and methodological implications of the study. The purpose of the present study was to explore and examine four brief treatments purported to be efficient, effective treatments for PTSD. Unfortunately, because of problems with client screening and data collection, the study fell short of reaching it goals.

Moreover, the nature of the study precludes comparison of the approaches, and such a comparison was never planned. The variety of presenting problems and the varying levels of severity of those problems within each treatment group precluded us from drawing conclusions about the utility of any treatment for any particular type of trauma. Nevertheless, all four of these treatments deserve further study in more controlled conditions and some of these approaches have already been the object of such research.