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Repeating Studies Validates Effective Mental Health Treatment

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There is a "replication crisis" in science. In the endeavor to substantiate theories and treatments, research scientists other than those who conducted the original research must be able to show similar results.

PETALUMA, Calif. - Amzeal -- In the early 2000s, multinational biotech company Amgen spent millions of dollars trying to replicate 53 "landmark" studies as a base from which it planned to develop the next generation of cancer drugs. The company was able to replicate only six. An analysis in the top journal "Nature" characterized this "a shocking result." Another pharmaceutical company, Bayer, also failed in its attempts to replicate key studies. Replications of five cancer biology trials were successful for only two.

Nature also conducted a survey of 1,576 researchers to identify their experiences with replication. It found that over 70 percent of them had failed when attempting to reproduce another scientist's research findings. Over half could not even replicate their own research.

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Researchers investigating a psychological self-help technique called Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT) have conducted numerous studies to determine if they can replicate the results of previous trials.

One of these measured levels of the stress hormone cortisol in participants. Using a double-blind randomized controlled trial design, the "Gold Standard" of research, it compared EFT to both talk therapy and rest. Anxiety and depression declined more than twice as much in the EFT group, while cortisol dropped dramatically.

The study, published in a prestigious psychology journal, the oldest in North America, was replicated by an independent research group at Bond University, a leading research institution in Australia. Replication trials of EFT have also been successful for PTSD, depression, phobias and anxiety.

Another study measured anxiety, depression, pain and food cravings in health care workers such as doctors, nurses, chiropractors, and psychotherapists. After a one-day EFT workshop, their average reduction in psychological distress dropped 45 percent. Replications showed very similar results.

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This led to the question of whether certain EFT practitioners are particularly gifted and produce results that are superior to others. A study was designed to measure the effects of treatment by a variety of practitioners trained in Clinical EFT, the evidence-based form of the method.

The results showed that four different practitioners offering Clinical EFT in various settings produced similar outcomes. Researchers concluded that it was the Clinical EFT method itself, rather than the unusual gifts of any one practitioner, that was responsible for the healing effects measured in the studies.

Dawson Church, the head of EFTUniverse, says, "The talents of particular practitioners, such as empathy and active listening, are likely to play a role in the treatment effects we observe. But research shows that the Clinical EFT method itself, when used by trained practitioners, produces consistent results."

For more information on recent research:

Jennifer Ellis
Energy Psychology Group, Inc

Source: Energy Psychology Group, Inc
Filed Under: Science

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