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Open Access EMDR Treatment of Migraine

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This pilot study was conducted at Gaziosmanpaşa Hospital, Istanbul, to investigate the effectiveness of eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR) on migraine headache by specifically treating traumas related to headaches. The sample consisted of 11 Turkish participants with chronic daily headache: 9 women (mean age of 31.7 years) and 2 men (mean age of 30.5 years). Participants had a history of migraine ranging from 2 to 30 years (mean = 12 years). Variables included participant daily ratings of headache frequency, duration, and intensity; medication intake; hospital emergency room (ER) visits; and scores on the Symptom Assessment-45 Questionnaire. The results showed a significant decrease in headache frequency and duration with no reduction in pain intensity. There was a significant decrease in the use of painkillers and ER visits. All results were maintained at 3-month follow-up, providing some preliminary evidence that EMDR may be effective and useful as an alternative treatment for migraine.


Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: 2011-11-01

More about this publication?
  • The Journal of EMDR Practice and Research is a quarterly, peer-reviewed publication devoted to integrative, state-of-the-art papers about Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing. It is a broadly conceived interdisciplinary journal that stimulates and communicates research and theory about EMDR, and their application to clinical practice.
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