Reverse therapy

From MEpedia, a crowd-sourced encyclopedia of ME and CFS science and history

Reverse therapy is a psychological intervention for CFS/ME developed by British psychotherapist John Eaton in 2002.[1] In 2005, Eaton published a book on the use of reverse therapy to treat ME/CFS and fibromyalgia.[2]

Theory[edit | edit source]

Reserve therapy is "an educational process closely linked to emotional intelligence training" and as such it is not a medical treatment.[1] Reverse therapy aims to improve "stress-related illness", as such ME/CFS is viewed as psychosomatic and linked to emotional difficulties or lack of recognition of emotions. Eaton developed Reserve Therapy based on his own personal experiences combined with concepts and ideas from well known psychiatrists and psychotherapists including Milton Erickson.[2]:1-10

Reverse therapy posits that non-specific illnesses originate from a breakdown between "Bodymind" (the limbic system or the "emotional" mind) and the "Critical mind" (the frontal lobes or the "judgemental" mind). This breakdown leads to uncleared emotions, stress, and a loss of fulfilment which in turn "leads to changes in signals from the Limbic system in the brain, leading to overwork of the HPA axis, to overload of the adrenal glands and alterations in the muscles, gut, circulation, immune system, sleep cycle and elsewhere."

Reverse therapy uses techniques to help the patient listen to their "Bodymind", and to become more assertive, positive, and mindful. Once the patient is more in tune with their "Bodymind" and leading a more balanced life, in theory the non-specific illness should resolve itself.[3]

Evidence[edit | edit source]

No studies have been done on reverse therapy.

Criticism[edit | edit source]

Costs and availability[edit | edit source]

Risks and safety[edit | edit source]

The lack of research on ME/CFS patients using reverse therapy means that risks are unknown and it has not been established whether reverse therapy is safe. Reserve therapy is not conducted by or overseen by physicians, it was developed by a psychologist rather than a medical doctor.[3]

Other mind-body interventions have had anecdotal patient reports of deterioration, either physically or psychological harm.[citation needed]

Online presence[edit | edit source]

Learn more[edit | edit source]

See also[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]