Comparing the Effectiveness of Psychological Debriefing, Eye Movement Desensitization Reprocessing, and Imaginal Exposure on Treatment of Chronic Post-traumatic Stress Disorder


1 Ph.D. in Psychology, Tehran Central Branch, Islamic Azad University, Tehran, Iran

2 Associate Professor, Department of Psychiatry & Behavior Science Committee, Kerman University of Medical Sciences, Kerman, Iran

3 Assistant Professor, Department of Psychology, Tehran Central Branch, Islamic Azad University, Tehran, Iran


Background & Aims: Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is considered as one of the most prevalent disorder during the life time and can negatively influence the individual, family and social relationships of patients; so, prevention and treatment of this disorder is highly important. Eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR), psychological debriefing (PD), and imaginal exposure (IE) are some treatment methods; but there is controversy about long effects of these treatments, especially among chronic patients. Method: In a semi experimental study, a total of 54 adult male patients, based on Davidson scale and psychiatric diagnostic, were randomly selected, and then were divided into 3 equal therapy groups. All participants were evaluated before, after and 3 months after the treatment. Data were analyzed through the repeated variance and Duncan post-hoc tests. Results: Psychological debriefing and eye movement desensitization and reprocessing were better than imaginal exposure in relief of chronic post-traumatic stress disorder signs and remaining the effectiveness in three months follow-up. Conclusion: It is concluded that all of the above methods are effective on chronic post-traumatic stress disorder and the efficacy of the therapeutic techniques would be still in force even after 3 months. Considering the importance of psychological interventions, it is necessary that such methods be taught to psychologists so that they can use them after traumatic accidents.