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Press RElease on EFT and PTSD- research

February 6, 2013

Foundation for Epigenetic Medicine, Santa Rosa, CA

Contact: Jennifer Geronimo at (619) 713-6386 or

Novel Therapy Produces “Highly Significant” Results

SANTA ROSA, CA. In a randomized controlled study (the gold standard of scientific research) of 59 U.S. veterans with posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), six hour-long sessions of a treatment method called Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT) resulted in a highly significant reduction of their symptoms. An impressive 86% of those receiving the treatment dropped from the category of clinical (severe) PTSD to the category of subclinical PTSD. This is the best result for PTSD ever obtained in a clinical trial of any therapy.
The study, the results of which will be published in the prestigious Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease in October, offers hope to the estimated 300,000 U.S. veterans of the conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan suffering from PTSD, which is characterized by depression, anxiety, insomnia, and other mental health issues that are often debilitating. More than 80% of PTSD sufferers meet diagnostic criteria for other psychological disorders as well, and all of the veterans in this study had clinical scores for anxiety and depression, as well as PTSD.
Study lead investigator Dawson Church, PhD, of the Foundation for Epigenetic Medicine in Santa Rosa, California, explains that “highly significant” is science-speak for the p value in the study, which was .0001. That means that there is only one possibility in ten thousand that the results were due to chance.
EFT is an innovative technique that pairs the recall of traumatic memories (a form of exposure therapy, a common method in psychology) with physical stimulation of specific points on the body to discharge stress (as identified by thousands of years of use in acupuncture). The veterans in the study were retested after 3 months and again after 6 months, and they remained stable. Their PTSD did not increase and the 86% of the veterans who moved from clinical to subclinical remained so.
Two other randomized controlled trials have shown similar results for PTSD, meeting the criteria for an “empirically validated treatment” published by the Clinical Psychology division of the American Psychological Association (APA). Several congressmen have advocated EFT to Secretary for Veterans Affairs Eric Shinseki. The Veterans Administration (VA) does not currently offer EFT to patients; Senator Chuck Schumer called on it to change, saying, “The VA cannot have this ‘see no evil hear no evil’ attitude. If they think the treatment works, they ought to give it to people.”

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