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Trauma Violence Abuse. 2004 Jul;5(3):285-300.

A systematic research synthesis of EMDR studies: implementation of the platinum standard.

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  • 1Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, USA.


Eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR) is a psychological treatment method used primarily for people who have experienced trauma. This article provides a systematic research synthesis of EMDR studies targeting trauma symptomatology published between 1997 and 2003. This synthesis builds on the Revised Gold Standard (RGS) as a guide to evaluate empirical EMDR studies. Modifications and additions to the RGS criteria are proposed. The resulting standard is referred to as the Platinum Standard (PS). Sixteen EMDR studies are reviewed and critiqued using the PS criteria. None of the studies reviewed met full PS criteria. The mean score for the studies on the PS was 8.28, with 9 of the studies exceeding the mean. The review calls for researchers to employ more rigorous research designs for EMDR effectiveness using PS criteria. Implications for practice, policy, and research are discussed.

Copyright 2004 Sage Publications

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