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Title: Therapeutic interventions in cases of post traumatic stress disorder : investigation of the psychological processes involved in eye movement desensitisation and reprocessing and cognitive behaviour therapy, using identity structure analysis
Author: Andrews, Donna Stephanie
ISNI:       0000 0004 6351 2353
Awarding Body: Ulster University
Current Institution: Ulster University
Date of Award: 2017
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Eye Movement Desensitisation Reprocessing (EMDR) and Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT) are both trauma- focused psychological treatments that are used specifically in the treatment of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). Their respective aims are to alleviate sufferers’ troubling memories of the specific trauma/s and the personal meanings of the event/s and their consequences. The study involved members of the Police Service of Northern Ireland (PSNI) who had been exposed to, or involved with, either single or multiple traumatic incidents, and as a result had been diagnosed with PTSD. The research explored the nature of self and identity redefinition in the police officers that had received either EMDR or CBT intervention. Using a two phase design, in-depth analysis of each person’s identity was conducted, indicating inner psychological processes before and after intervention. Aspects of their identities had changed considerably from phase 1 (pre­therapy) through to phase 2 (post therapy) evidencing the effects of therapy on ongoing psychological processes (identity redefinition). The approach used in the study involved two main elements that included case study approach (in the form of semi-structured interviews) and Identity Structure Analysis (ISA) instrument. Generic themes from all of the respondents were identified based on previous literature reviews coupled with ethnographic work, such as interviews. The results indicated that no major differences in terms of clinical outcomes were found between EMDR and CBT. Limitations of the study acknowledged more time was required to enable a further phase, and a larger sample size needed for comparative analysis. The NICE evidence update (NICE, 2013) to the guidelines for the management for PTSD (NICE, 2005) acknowledges that the evidence is still very limited with no comparison studies between CBT and EMDR. The results highlighted there is further specific research required between the two interventions in terms of specific cohorts, such as police personnel. The contribution of this study to theory, knowledge and understanding highlighted the importance and need for further research in terms of treating PTSD with comparative studies between CBT and EMDR.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available