Is EMDR Effective with Schizophrenia?

Two studies have indicated that EMDR therapy has provided positive treatment effects to traumatized psychotic patients (de Bont, van Minnen, & de Jongh, 2013; . van den Berg,  & van den Gaag, 2012).  In the second study, treatment of PTSD has a positive effect on auditory verbal hallucinations, delusions, anxiety symptoms, depression symptoms, and self-esteem.  Individuals with schizophrenia may have experienced distressing life experiences or traumas that exacerbate their symptoms. Using EMDR to process memories of such events may be helpful in alleviating stress and reducing symptoms. In such cases, it would be assumed that treatment would be provided only after appropriate stabilization, and in the hands of an expert in this specialty area. Anecdotal reports have given preliminary support for this. However, more research needs to be conducted.