Bessel van der Kolk, MD
Pioneer in alternative PTSD treatments
Bessel A. van der Kolk has been the medical director of the Trauma Center in Boston, Massachusetts, for 30 years.
A professor of psychiatry at Boston University Medical School, and director of the National Center for Child Traumatic Stress Complex Trauma Network, he participated in the first neuroimaging study of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and in the first study to link borderline personality disorder with childhood trauma.
Dr. van der Kolk was coprincipal investigator of the DSM IV Field Trial for PTSD and is chair of the NCTSN DSM V workgroup on developmental trauma disorder. He has published more than 100 peer-reviewed scientific articles on various aspects of trauma, including yoga for treating PTSD, the use of theater for violence prevention, the mechanisms of EMDR, and the use of neurofeedback in PTSD.
He has also written extensively about using neuroscience research to identify appropriate treatments for PTSD and completed the first NIMH-funded study of EMDR. Dr. van der Kolk has taught at universities and hospitals throughout the world. His newest book is the New York Times bestseller The Body Keeps the Score: Brain, Mind, and Body in the Healing of Trauma.