Publications by authors named "Hellen Hornsveld"

6 Publications

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Addiction-Focused Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing Therapy as an Adjunct to Regular Outpatient Treatment for Alcohol Use Disorder: Results From a Randomized Clinical Trial.

Alcohol Clin Exp Res 2020 01 17;44(1):272-283. Epub 2019 Dec 17.

Nijmegen Institute for Scientist-Practitioners in Addiction (NISPA), Radboud University Nijmegen, Nijmegen, The Netherlands.

Background: This study examined the feasibility, safety, and efficacy of addiction-focused eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (AF-EMDR) treatment, as an add-on intervention to treatment as usual (TAU).

Methods: Adult outpatients with alcohol use disorder (AUD) (N = 109) who already received or had just started with TAU (Community Reinforcement Approach) were recruited at 6 outpatient addiction care facilities. They were randomly assigned to either TAU + 7 weekly 90-minute sessions of AF-EMDR (N = 55) or TAU-only (N = 54). Assessments were made at baseline, after AF-EMDR therapy (+ 8 weeks in the TAU-only group), and at 1- and 6-month follow-up. The primary outcomes were changes in drinking behavior as reported by the participant and biomarker indices.

Results: Data were analyzed as intent-to-treat with linear mixed models. Additionally, sensitivity analyses were performed. No group or interaction effects were found for any of the outcome variables. Only limited change over time was seen with regard to indices of personal and societal recovery and in some secondary indices of clinical recovery (craving, desire thinking, and rumination). Reliable Change Index calculations showed that more TAU-only participants showed clinical improvement with regard to alcohol consumption while a somewhat higher proportion of participants in the TAU + AF-EMDR group experienced less craving. The acceptability, safety, and feasibility of the treatments received in both groups were comparable.

Conclusions: There was no add-on effect of AF-EMDR on TAU with regard to drinking behavior in outpatients with an AUD. Possible explanations are discussed. Future studies should first establish proof of principle regarding the potential of AF-EMDR therapy to disrupt operant learning and habits relevant in addiction.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/acer.14249DOI Listing
January 2020

The impact of eye movements and tones on disturbing memories involving PTSD and other mental disorders.

J Behav Ther Exp Psychiatry 2013 Dec 13;44(4):477-83. Epub 2013 Jul 13.

Department of Behavioural Sciences, Academic Centre for Dentistry Amsterdam (ACTA), University of Amsterdam and VU University Amsterdam, The Netherlands.

Background: A wide array of experimental studies are supportive of a working memory explanation for the effects of eye movements in EMDR therapy. The working memory account predicts that, as a consequence of competition in working memory, traumatic memories lose their emotional charge.

Method: This study was aimed at investigating (1) the effects of taxing the working memory, as applied in EMDR, during recall of negative memories in 32 patients with posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and 32 patients with other mental disorders, and (2) whether the results would differ between both groups. In a therapeutic session patients were asked to recollect a crucial upsetting memory while, in counterbalanced order (a) performing eye movements, (b) listening to tones and (c) watching a blank wall ('recall only'), each episode lasting 6 min.

Results: Eye movements were found to be more effective in diminishing the emotionality of the memory than 'recall only'. There was a trend showing that tones were less effective than eye movements, but more effective than 'recall only'. The majority of patients (64%) preferred tones to continue with. The effects of taxing working memory on disturbing memories did not differ between PTSD patients and those diagnosed with other conditions.

Conclusions: The findings provide further evidence for the value of employing eye movements in EMDR treatments. The results also support the notion that EMDR is a suitable option for resolving disturbing memories underlying a broader range of mental health problems than PTSD alone.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jbtep.2013.07.002DOI Listing
December 2013

Tones inferior to eye movements in the EMDR treatment of PTSD.

Behav Res Ther 2012 May 19;50(5):275-9. Epub 2012 Feb 19.

Clinical and Health Psychology, Utrecht University, Utrecht, The Netherlands.

Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) is an effective treatment for posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). During EMDR, patients make eye movements (EMs) while recalling traumatic memories, but recently therapists have replaced EMs by alternating beep tones. There are no outcome studies on the effects of tones. In an earlier analogue study, tones were inferior to EMs in the reduction of vividness of aversive memories. In a first EMDR session, 12 PTSD patients recalled trauma memories in three conditions: recall only, recall + tones, and recall + EMs. Three competing hypotheses were tested: 1) EMs are as effective as tones and better than recall only, 2) EMs are better than tones and tones are as effective as recall only, and 3) EMs are better than tones and tones are better than recall only. The order of conditions was balanced, each condition was delivered twice, and decline in memory vividness and emotionality served as outcome measures. The data strongly support hypothesis 2 and 3 over 1: EMs outperformed tones while it remained unclear if tones add to recall only. The findings add to earlier considerations and earlier analogue findings suggesting that EMs are superior to tones and that replacing the former by the latter was premature.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.brat.2012.02.001DOI Listing
May 2012

EMDR and mindfulness. Eye movements and attentional breathing tax working memory and reduce vividness and emotionality of aversive ideation.

J Behav Ther Exp Psychiatry 2011 Dec 12;42(4):423-31. Epub 2011 Apr 12.

Clinical and Health Psychology, Utrecht University, PO Box 80140, 3508 TC Utrecht, The Netherlands.

Background And Objectives: Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) and Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT) are effective in reducing the subjective impact of negative ideation. In both treatments, patients are encouraged to engage in a dual-task (eye movements (EM) in the case of EMDR and attentional breathing (AB) in the case of MBCT) while they experience negative thoughts or images. Working memory theory explains the effects of EM by suggesting that it taxes limited working memory resources, thus rendering the image less vivid and emotional. It was hypothesized that both AB and EM tax working memory and that both reduce vividness and emotionality of negative memories.

Methods: Working memory taxation by EM and AB was assessed in healthy volunteers by slowing down of reaction times. In a later session, participants retrieved negative memories during recall only, recall + EM and recall + AB (study 1). Under improved conditions the study was replicated (study 2).

Results: In both studies and to the same degree, attentional breathing and eye movements taxed working memory. Both interventions reduced emotionality of memory in study 1 but not in study 2 and reduced vividness in study 2 but not in study 1.

Limitations: EMDR is more than EM and MBCT is more than AB. Memory effects were assessed by self reports.

Conclusions: EMDR and MBCT may (partly) derive their beneficial effects from taxing working memory during recall of negative ideation.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jbtep.2011.03.004DOI Listing
December 2011

Decision-making impairments in women with binge eating disorder in comparison with obese and normal weight women.

Eur Eat Disord Rev 2012 Jan 9;20(1):e56-62. Epub 2011 Feb 9.

Altrecht Eating Disorders Rintveld, Altrecht Mental Health Institute, Zeist, The Netherlands.

Objective: The purpose of the current study was to examine decision making in female patients with binge eating disorder (BED) in comparison with obese and normal weight women.

Method: In the study, 20 patients with BED, 21 obese women without BED and 34 healthy women participated. Decision making was assessed using the Iowa Gambling Task (IGT). Several questionnaires were administered measuring binge eating severity, sensitivity for punishment and reward, and self-control.

Results: The findings indicated that the BED and obese group performed poorly on the IGT. Participants who have BED and are obese did not improve their choice behaviour over time, whereas participants with normal weight showed a learning effect. An association between IGT performance and binge eating severity was found.

Conclusion: This study demonstrates that patients with BED display decision-making deficits on the IGT comparable with other forms of disordered eating. Future research should focus on unravelling the processes underlying the deficits.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/erv.1098DOI Listing
January 2012

EMDR: eye movements superior to beeps in taxing working memory and reducing vividness of recollections.

Behav Res Ther 2011 Feb 22;49(2):92-8. Epub 2010 Nov 22.

Clinical and Health Psychology, Utrecht University, Utrecht, The Netherlands.

Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is effectively treated with eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR) with patients making eye movements during recall of traumatic memories. Many therapists have replaced eye movements with bilateral beeps, but there are no data on the effects of beeps. Experimental studies suggest that eye movements may be beneficial because they tax working memory, especially the central executive component, but the presence/degree of taxation has not been assessed directly. Using discrimination Reaction Time (RT) tasks, we found that eye movements slow down RTs to auditive cues (experiment I), but binaural beeps do not slow down RTs to visual cues (experiment II). In an arguably more sensitive "Random Interval Repetition" task using tactile stimulation, working memory taxation of beeps and eye movements were directly compared. RTs slowed down during beeps, but the effects were much stronger for eye movements (experiment III). The same pattern was observed in a memory experiment with healthy volunteers (experiment IV): vividness of negative memories was reduced after both beeps and eye movements, but effects were larger for eye movements. Findings support a working memory account of EMDR and suggest that effects of beeps on negative memories are inferior to those of eye movements.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.brat.2010.11.003DOI Listing
February 2011
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