Mind Programming With Hypnosis Seems to Rock
Over the last week I have met a range of Clinical Hypnotherapists and I have been able to explore how what they do helps their clients achieve their goals. It has been enlightening, understanding how each of them working in a niche area support their clients using what is often described as 'voodoo'. Talking with a range of specialists gives me the opportunity to dig deep into how and what they do to help their own clients achieve the desired result. Here I reflect on a week of hypnosis of hypnotic interest.
I begin my week meeting Rosalind Smith, a smart, straight talking Hypnotherapist who outlines how she recently helped one woman lose five stone programming her mind to eat less. Well aware of how hypnosis is now a leading edge treatment for helping people lose the excess weight, I am inspired as I look at a before and after photo of Rosalind's client who now looks so much happier. Rosalind explains how the hypnosis has also motivated her client to take up exercise and sustain long term focus to stay on track. What strikes me here is the enthusiasm she holds to get results for her clients and a confirmation in my own mind that a direct no nonsense approach delivers results.
Next I meet Nicola Beattie, a Hypnotherapist specialising in addictions. What's interesting is the array of addictions she treats from sex addiction to cocaine addiction. She explains to me that her style of hypnosis is not all about relaxing down into a comfortable place visualising a meadow. In fact it is far from it, as she uses a protocol that means her clients are directly guided into hypnosis to understand the devastating consequences of continuing to practice the addiction. Creating a strong aversion to the presenting addiction is a major part of her treatment plan, before planting into her clients mind that they are now letting go of the addictive behaviour, and bringing in a new positive way of living.
Sports people have always recognised the power of their mind so I catch up with Alice Pinion who specialises in sports performance. She explains that she helps sports people experience the hypnotic trance like state by using deep relaxation and then gets them to focus on bringing the best sporting memories to the forefront of their mind. When asked about negative experiences she explains to me that worries are pushed away, in other words mentally dissociated from the unconscious mind. What follows is strong guided imagery and positive inner dialogue that evidently helps the sportsperson think like a champion.
As my journey continues I want to speak with a Hypnotherapist that specialises in fertility so I connect with Sally Reeves. Can hypnotherapy really assist with conception? Well it would seem so. Sally explains to me that her goal is to always help women reduce their level of anxiety so that they have more chance to conceive, and strengthen the belief of their own sense of fertility. Sally's natural enthusiasm to help women make their dream come true is pretty special and she affirms my thought that often it is important to clear away any emotional issues such as childhood trauma that may be getting in the way of conception. Sally's work feels very special. Helping a woman to conceive must deliver the most amazing job satisfaction.
I complete my discussions with Debbie Holden, a specialist weight management Hypnotherapist who focuses upon understanding the underlying reasons for weight gain so that she can work on them with her clients and then move forward to help them reduce their weight. It sure is a nice place to finish as I reaffirm the power of hypnosis in helping to reduce obesity.
What really strikes me as I complete my week is the whole genius of hypnosis. I am reminded of the vast array of conditions it can help treat, and the passion there is out in the field from many professional Hypnotherapists to help desperate members of the public change their lives. My conclusion is strong. We are what we think.
Wake Up to a New World
by Janice Rosenthal Rock
“I’m so tired of spending my life on a diet. The harder I try to control my weight, the more I become obsessed with food!”
Sound familiar? People face a myriad of challenges every day, but one common lament is not being able to make the changes you want to make. You’ve probably heard that hypnotherapy, which translates to “sleep of the nervous system” can treat various conditions, but the truth about hypnotherapy and why more people don’t seek this type of treatment remains a mystery to many.
When most of us think of hypnosis, we think of the hypnotist on stage in Las Vegas, getting a group of people to do crazy things in a hypnotic state…all while the audience laughs. Hypnosis used for entertainment is common today. However, hypnotherapy is used for everything from alleviating chronic pain and quitting smoking to forensic investigation and academic research. Hypnosis met mainstream medicine in the 1950s when the American Medical Association (AMA) commissioned a report that endorsed an earlier policy of the British Medical Association. The AMA concluded, “The use of hypnosis has a recognized place in the medical armamentarium and is a useful technique in the treatment of certain illnesses when employed by qualified medical and dental personnel.” Induction, which is the process of putting someone into the hypnotic state, is the same whether the outcome is entertainment or therapy.
If hypnosis could potentially be the answer to weight loss or easing pain, then one may wonder why it isn’t more popular. David Greenwood, certified hypnotherapist and owner of Greenwood Wellness in Folsom says, “The main reason people don’t come to us for help is because of fear – fear we will uncover some hidden secrets in their subconscious; fear they will be made to do something against their will; or fear that under hypnosis they will reveal things they don’t want to reveal.” Greenwood continues, “The reality is, these fears are unfounded. I can’t make anyone do something their conscious mind doesn’t want to do.”
CHANGE WILL DO YOU GOOD
So, can anyone be hypnotized? And can you be hypnotized even if you don’t want to be? “Not everyone can be hypnotized,” Greenwood explains. “You have to trust the process and be ready to make changes, and not everyone is ready.” Alas, there lie the limitations of hypnotherapy. For the process to be successful depends on how motivated the person is to move forward – to change. Some people find, once they start therapy, they don’t have the energy to make the changes they want to make. The power of old negative habits can be strong. While hypnotherapy is a very effective tool, it takes focus and discipline to overcome the self-sabotage that traps many of us. However, when someone is truly ready to change and move forward, and when they can trust the process, success is almost guaranteed. Greenwood reports that he has excellent results with many clients, including those who want to stop smoking, lose weight, improve their public speaking skills, develop confidence, and make better relationship choices.
If breaking a bad habit is on your wish list, and you’re ready and willing to make a change, hypnotherapy could be the treatment for you.
For more information, visit natboard.com.
This article appears in the October 2010 issue of Style-Online
Saving Money With Hypnosis - San Francisco (Reuters Health) -
Using hypnosis in the operating room could cut costs of some medical procedures in half, Harvard researchers reported Monday at the annual meeting of the American Psychological Association.
"Doing hypnosis on the operating room table certainly makes sense, but unless it saves money, you will not be doing it," said study author Dr. Elvira V. Lang, associate professor of radiology and medicine at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston, Massachusetts.
The National Institutes of Health National Center funded the research for Complementary and Alternative Medicine. The study followed 241 patients undergoing various medical procedures such as clearing blocked arteries.
**All the patients were given standard medical care, including the option of self-medicating drugs for pain.
**One-third was also given empathic attention from a health professional in addition to standard care.
**Another third were given self-hypnotic relaxation techniques in addition to standard care as part of preparation for the procedure.
Lang reported that the hypnotized group reported significantly less pain during the procedure. The hypnotized group also took significantly less time to complete their procedures and used half as
much pain medication. Based on these and other findings, Lang calculated that the average
cost for a procedure using standard care was $638, while the cost for a procedure using adjunct hypnosis would cost $300, cutting the cost by more than half. Even if hypnosis added nearly an hour to the preparation time, it would still save money, she said. "Hypnosis in the operating room is feasible, it is effective and very resource-sensitive," Lang concluded.
Hypnosis Subjects See What They Believe:
Scientists are admitting hypnosis makes people literally see what they believe by affecting the way their brains function.
Volunteers who had their brains scanned while under hypnosis showed they were not merely doing what they were told. The scans revealed that when they were asked to see non-existent colours, they really saw them.
In the tests by the University of California a burst of activity was seen in the part of their brain responsible for perceiving colour. The scientists carrying out the study believe it has important implications and a spokesman said: "There has been a whole argument that hypnosis is just an exaggerated form of social compliance - in other words, people just telling you what you want to hear."
The research team is now looking at how hypnosis can prevent pain. One trial currently under way involves a group of children aged six to 12 with a suspected kidney disorder. It can only be investigated by inserting a catheter probe into the bladder without anaesthetic.
Under hypnosis, the children imagine they are enjoying a trip to Disneyland. "There is less crying, less pain as they are inserting the catheter, and the procedure takes 20 minutes less, which for a kid is a big difference," said the spokesman. See this story on Ananova: http://www.ananova.com/go/523059
Scientific American Feature Article: July, 2001
The Truth and the Hype of Hypnosis - By Michael R. Nash
Though often denigrated as fakery or wishful thinking, hypnosis has been shown to be a real phenomenon with a variety of therapeutic uses -- especially in controlling pain...
Read it at: http://www.sciam.com/2001/0701issue/0701nash.html
Hypnosis & Bone Fracture:
The Harvard Medical School conducted research on the use of hypnosis to enhance physical healing. Twelve people with a recent bone fracture were divided into two groups. One group received hypnosis and the other group served as control. Both groups received standard orthopedic treatment. The hypnosis group had individual hypnotic sessions and listened to audio tapes designed to increase bone healing. Xray and orthopedic evaluations were made during the 12 weeks of the experiment.
The results showed a faster healing for the hypnosis group at week 9 of the experiment. Xrays revealed a notable difference at the edge of the fracture at week 6 of the experiment. The hypnosis group also had better mobility and used less pain killers. The researchers conclude by saying that "despite a small sample size.... these data suggest that hypnosis may be capable of enhancing both anatomical and functional fracture healing, and that further investigation of hypnosis to accelerate healing is warranted."
The article was "Using hypnosis to accelerate the healing of bone fractures: a randomized controlled pilot study", by Ginandes, CS, Rosenthal, DI. Alternative Therapy Health Medicine, 1999, March, 5(2), pp.67-75.
Experts Urge the Inclusion of Hypnosis and Biofeedback in the Medical Treatment of Chronic Pain and Insomnia:
An expert panel assembled by the National Institutes of Health has announced their finding that the use of hypnosis, biofeedback, meditation, and other behavioral therapies should be used more widely for the treatment of chronic pain and insomnia. Further, the panel said those therapies should be reimbursed bv health insurance along with standard medical care.
The benefits of hypnotic analgesia as an adjunct to childbirth education were studied in 60 nulliparous women. Subjects were divided into high and low hypnotic susceptibility groups before receiving 6 sessions of childbirth education and skill mastery using an ischemic pain task. Half of the Subjects in each group received a hypnotic induction at the beginning of each session; the remaining control Subjects received relaxation and breathing exercises typically used in childbirth education. Both hypnotic Subjects and highly susceptible Subjects reported reduced pain. Hypnotically prepared births had shorter Stage 1 labors, less medication, higher Apgar scores, and more frequent spontaneous deliveries than control Subjects' births. Highly susceptible, hypnotically treated women had lower depression scores after birth than women in the other three groups. We propose that repeated skill mastery facilitated the effectiveness of hypnosis in the study.
A study from the University of Connecticut, Storrs, suggests that long term results are better when hypnosis is part of the therapy package particularly if the patient is a believer in hypnosis.
Researchers analyzed 18 studies comparing a cognitive behavioral therapy, such as relaxation training, guided imagery, self monitoring or goal setting with the same therapy supplemented by hypnosis. Those who received the hypnosis lost more weight than 90 percent of the non hypnosis, and maintained the weight loss two years after treatment ended.
The placebo effect may account for some of hypnosis's success, says Irving Kirsch, PhD professor of psychology. Although therapeutic suggestion and relaxation training were used in both hypnotic and non hypnotic sessions, they worked much better when they were referred to as "hypnosis" techniques, he notes.
Hypnotic Visual Illusion Alters Color Processing in the Brain
Stephen M. Kosslyn, Ph.D., William L. Thompson, B.A., Maria F. Costantini-Ferrando, Ph.D., Nathaniel M. Alpert, Ph.D. and David Spiegel, M.D.
Am J Psychiatry 2000 157: 1279-1284. The journal is online (but requires a subscription) at: http://ajp.psychiatryonline.org/
OBJECTIVE: This study was designed to determine whether hypnosis can modulate color perception. Such evidence would provide insight into the nature of hypnosis and its underlying mechanisms.
METHOD: Eight highly hypnotizable subjects were asked to see a color pattern in color, a similar gray-scale pattern in color, the color pattern as gray scale, and the gray-scale pattern as gray scale during positron emission tomography scanning by means of [15O]CO2. The classic color area in the fusiform or lingual region of the brain was first identified by analyzing the results when subjects were asked to perceive color as color versus when they were asked to perceive gray scale as gray scale.
RESULTS: When subjects were hypnotized, color areas of the left and right hemispheres were activated when they were asked to perceive color, whether they were actually shown the color or the gray-scale stimulus. These brain regions had decreased activation when subjects were told to see gray scale, whether they were actually shown the color or gray-scale stimuli. These results were obtained only during hypnosis in the left hemisphere, whereas blood flow changes reflected instructions to perceive color versus gray scale in the right hemisphere, whether or not subjects had been hypnotized.
CONCLUSIONS: Among highly hypnotizable subjects, observed changes in subjective experience achieved during hypnosis were reflected by changes in brain function similar to those that occur in perception. These findings support the claim that hypnosis is a psychological state with distinct neural correlates and is not just the result of adopting a role.
[Editorial Note: This "just adopting a role," or "role playing to please the audience" theory is no longer held by most researchers for talented and motivated subjects/clients and hasn't been for a number of years. The role taking theory of Sarbin for example is effectively a psychological state theory in most ways because it views hypnotic phenomena as mediated by "organismic involvement" in the role (basically what most practitioners call depth). This study is very useful because it shows things going on specifically in hypnosis vs. "just imagining," and so is a start in identifying the neurological differences between someone experiencing something in a hypnotic way and experiencing in a more casual way. Given a way to establish the 'reality' of a hypnotic hallucination, this potentially also provides a way to distinguish between what is going on with "low" vs. "high" hypnotizable people. The people involved in this particular study were all pre-selected as "highs," a common technique in research of this sort to maximize the effects seen. - Todd Stark]Irritable Bowel Syndrome
A British study of 18 adults with IBS published in The Lancet found that hypnosis "strikingly" reduced colonic motility, thus decreasing diarrhea and cramping (July 11, 1992).
In a controlled study of 79 men with impotence from no known organic cause, only hypnosis proved more effective than a placebo, boosting sexual function by 80 percent (British Journal of Urology, February 1996).
Preparing for Surgery
A controlled study of 32 coronary bypass patients showed that those taught self-hypnosis pre-operatively were more relaxed after surgery and had less need for pain medication (Journal of Cardiovascular Surgery, February 1997).
A review panel appointed by the National Institutes of Health found "strong evidence" for the use of hypnosis in alleviating pain associated with cancer (Journal of the American Medical Association, July 24-31, 1996).
Self-Hypnosis Can Cut Stress and Boost Your Immune System
A number of studies have suggested stress can hinder the body's immune system defenses. Now researchers say people may be able to fight back with the stress-relieving techniques of self-hypnosis.
In a study of medical students under exam-time stress, investigators found that those who received "hypnotic-relaxation training" did not show the same reduction in key immune system components that their untrained counterparts did.
The researchers looked at 33 medical and dental students during relatively low-stress periods and around the time of the first major exam of the term. Half of the students attended sessions where they learned to relax through self-hypnosis.
The investigators found that during exam time, the self-hypnosis students launched stronger immune responses compared with students who did not learn the technique. And the more often students practiced the relaxation strategy, the stronger their immune response.
In previous studies, the researchers found that stressful times may impair the body's wound-healing process and response to vaccination. They and other researchers have also found that relaxation techniques may combat these effects by relieving stress and boosting the immune system.
The data from this study provide encouraging evidence that interventions may reduce the immunological dysregulation associated with acute stressors. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology 2001;69
Relax and live longer
by Emma Young
Patients with Hodgkin's disease or non-Hodgkin's lymphoma live longer if they receive relaxation and hypnotherapy treatment along with standard chemotherapy. Similar approaches has resulted in mixed results for other cancers.Leslie Walker of Hull University studied 63 patients with newly diagnosed cancers, all of whom were receiving chemotherapy and standard anti-nausea drugs. The patients were split into three groups. One group was given relaxation tapes, another received the tapes plus hypnotherapy to reinforce their effect. The third received neither. Walker followed up the patients 13 years after diagnosis. "We found that the patients who had received relaxation or relaxation and hypnotherapy lived significantly longer," he says.
New lease of life
On average, patients in the relaxation and hypnotherapy group lived an average of 10.7 years after diagnosis, patients who used only the tapes lived 8.7 years and patients with neither lived 7.8 years. But Walker stresses that the patients differed in age and the stage of disease when treatment started. So although the differences are significant, translating hypnotherapy plus relaxation into three extra years of life is not possible, he says. How the relaxation and hypnotherapy may increase survival is not clear. Other studies of cancer patients have found that similar treatments can boost levels of killer T cells. But researchers have not been able to link this rise with increased survival."Chemotherapy and radiotherapy tend to suppress immune system functioning, so small interventions may help patients be more resistant to these effects," Walker says.
This research was presented at the British Psychological Society's Centenary Conference in Glasgow, UK. Submitted by Todd I. Stark, firstname.lastname@example.org, http://ToddStark.com/
Hypnosis Trials 1976 - 1998
Agras WS. Horne M. Taylor CB. Expectation and the blood-pressure lowering effects of relaxation. Psychosomatic Med. 1982; 44(4):389-95 In a study of the blood-pressure-lowering effects of relaxation training in patients with essential hypertension, instructions concerning the relaxation procedure were varied so that one group was told to expect delayed blood-pressure-lowering and the other group immediate lowering. The systolic blood pressure decrease during the training period in the immediate lowering group was 17.0 mm Hg, compared with 2.4 mm Hg for the delayed group (p = 0.001). Diastolic blood pressure changes were not significantly different. Measures of therapy credibility and perceived relaxation failed to differentiate the groups. The implications of these findings for future research and for clinical practice are considered.
Aikins Murphy P. Alternative therapies for nausea and vomiting of pregnancy. Obstetrics & Gynecology 1998;91(1):149-55 OBJECTIVE: To review available evidence about the effectiveness of alternative therapies for nausea and vomiting of pregnancy. DATA SOURCES: MEDLINE and 13 additional US and international data bases were searched in 1996-1997 for papers that described use of alternative medicine in the treatment of pregnancy and pregnancy complications, specifically those addressing nausea, vomiting, and hyperemesis. Bibliographies of retrieved papers were reviewed to identify additional sources. METHODS OF STUDY SELECTION: All relevant English language clinical research papers were reviewed. Randomized clinical trials addressing specifically the use of nonpharmaceutical and nondietary interventions were chosen for detailed review. TABULATION, INTEGRATION, AND RESULTS: Ten randomized trials studying the effects of acupressure, ginger, and pyridoxine on nausea and vomiting of pregnancy were reviewed. Evidence of beneficial effects was found for these three interventions, although the data on acupressure are equivocal. Insufficient evidence was found for the benefits of hypnosis. Other interventions have not been studied. CONCLUSION: There is a dearth of research to support or to refute the efficacy of a number of common remedies for nausea and vomiting of pregnancy. The best-studied alternative remedy is acupressure, which may afford relief to many women; ginger and vitamin B6 also may be beneficial. [References: 36]Allison DB. Faith MS. Hypnosis as an adjunct to cognitive-behavioral psychotherapy for obesity: a meta-analytic reappraisal. Journal of Consulting & Clinical Psychology 1996;64(3):513-6 I. Kirsch, G. Montgomery, and G. Sapirstein (1995) meta-analyzed 6 weight-loss studies comparing the efficacy of cognitive-behavior therapy (CBT) alone to CBT plus hypnotherapy and concluded that "the addition of hypnosis substantially enhanced treatment outcome" (p.214). Kirsch reported a mean effect size (expressed as d) of 1.96. After correcting several transcription and computational inaccuracies in the original meta-analysis, these 6 studies yield a smaller mean effect size (.26). Moreover, if 1 questionable study is removed from the analysis, the effect sizes become more homogeneous and the mean (.21) is no longer statistically significant. It is concluded that the addition of hypnosis to CBT for weight loss results in, at most, a small enhancement of treatment outcome.
Amigo I, Cuesta V, Fernandez A, Gonzalez A The effect of verbal instructions on blood pressure measurement. Journal of Hypertension 1993 Mar;11(3):293-6 AIM: To determine whether orally delivered instructions can modify the intensity and direction of blood pressure and heart rate fluctuation. METHODS: The blood pressure of 120 subjects, 60 hypertensive and 60 normotensive, was measured before and after oral instructions. The normotensive subjects were selected from a sample of university students and the hypertensive patients were selected at a routine medical screening. Each sample of 60 subjects was randomly divided into four groups of 15. Each subject was left seated alone in a room for 5 min. The researcher then measured the subjects' blood pressure and heart rate. Following this, each group of normotensives and hypertensives was told that their blood pressure would diminish, or that it would not change or that it would increase. The control group was given no instructions. After 5 min the blood pressure and heart were measured again. RESULTS: In the normotensive and hypertensive groups who were told that their blood pressure would increase, systolic blood pressure increased by 4.3 and 2.5 mmHg, respectively. In the groups who were told that their blood pressure would decrease, systolic pressure fell by 7.8 and 7.4 mmHg, respectively. Those who were told that no change would occur showed a systolic pressure decrease of 3.5 and 1.8 mmHg, respectively. In the control groups systolic blood pressure decreased by 5.6 and 4.2 mmHg, respectively. CONCLUSIONS: These results show that oral instructions are a source of variation in the assessment of blood pressure and emphasize the need for 24-h blood pressure monitoring to eliminate this type of variation.
Anderson JA, Basker MA, Dalton R Migraine and hypnotherapy International Journal of Clinical & Experimental Hypnosis 1975;23(1):48-58 Compared the treatment of migraine by hypnosis and autohypnosis with the treatment of migraine by the drug prochlorperazine (Stemetil). Random allocation of 47 patients was made to one or other prophylactic measure, followed by monthly assessments and independent evaluation of 1 yr of continuous care. Criteria of improvement were the number of attacks/month, number who had Grade 4 attacks, and complete remission. Results show that the number of attacks and the number who suffered blinding attacks were significantly lower for the group receiving hypnotherapy than for the group receiving prochlorperazine. For the group on hypnotherapy, these 2 measures were significantly lower when on hypnotherapy than when on previous treatment. Prochlorperazine seemed about as effective as previous treatment. 10 out of 23 patients on hypnotherapy achieved complete remission during the last 3 mo of the trial, compared to only 3 out of 24 on prochlorperazine. It is concluded that further trials of hypnotherapy are justified against some other treatment not solely associated with the ingestion of tablets. (German, French, & Spanish summaries)
Anderson JA. Dalton ER. Basker MA. Insomnia and hypnotherapy. Journal of the Royal Society of Medicine 1979;72(10):734-9
Andreychuk T, Scriver C Hypnosis and biofeedback in the treatment of migraine headache Int J Clin Exp Hypn 1975; 23: 172-3
Anonymous. Hypnosis for asthma--a controlled trial. A report to the Research Committee of the British Tuberculosis Association. BMJ 1968;4(623):71-6 Investigated the use of hypnosis in the treatment of asthma in patients, 10-60 yr. old with paroxysmal attacks of wheezing or tight chest capable of relief by bronchodilators. 1 group was given hypnosis monthly and used autohypnosis daily for 1 yr. Comparisons were made with a control group prescribed a specially devised set of breathing exercises aimed at progressive relaxation. Treatment was randomly allocated and Subjects were treated by physicians in 9 centers. Results were assessed by daily diary recordings of wheezing and the use of bronchodilators, and by monthly recordings of forced expiratory volume (FEV) and vital capacity (VC). Independent clinical assessments were made by physicians unaware of Subjects' treatment. 176 out of 252 patients completed the program. Both treatment groups showed some improvement. Among men the assessments of wheezing score and use of bronchodilators showed similar improvement in the 2 groups; among women, however, those treated by hypnosis showed improvement similar to that observed in the men, but those given breathing exercises made much less progress, the difference between the 2 groups reaching statistical significance. Changes in FEV and VC between the control and hypnosis groups were closely similar. Independent clinical assessors considered the asthma to be better in 59% of the hypnosis group and in 43% of the controls, the difference being significant. There was little difference between the sexes. Physicians with previous experience of hypnosis obtained significantly better results than did those without such experience.
Ashton C Jr. Whitworth GC. Seldomridge JA. Shapiro PA. Weinberg AD.Michler RE. Smith CR. Rose EA. Fisher S. Oz MC. Self-hypnosis reduces anxiety following coronary artery bypass surgery. A prospective, randomized trial. Journal of Cardiovascular Surgery 1997;38(1):69-75 OBJECTIVE: The role of complementary medicine techniques has generated increasing interest in today's society. The purpose of our study was to evaluate the effects of one technique, self-hypnosis, and its role in coronary artery bypass surgery. We hypotesize that self-hypnosis relaxation techniques will have a positive effect on the patient's mental and physical condition following coronary artery bypass surgery. EXPERIMENTAL DESIGN: A prospective, randomized trial was conducted. Patients were followed beginning one day prior to surgery until the time of discharge from the hospital. SETTING: The study was conducted at Columbia Presbyterian Medical Center, a large tertiary care teaching institution. PATIENTS: All patients undergoing first-time elective coronary artery bypass surgery were eligible. A total of 32 patients were randomized into two groups. INTERVENTIONS: The study group was taught self-hypnosis relaxation techniques preoperatively, with no therapy in the control group. MEASURES: Outcome variables studied included anesthetic requirements, operative parameters, postoperative pain medication requirements, quality of life, hospital stay, major morbidity and mortality. RESULTS: Patients who were taught self-hypnosis relaxation techniques were significantly more relaxed postoperatively compared to the control group (p=0.032). Pain medication requirements were also significantly less in patients practising the self-hypnosis relaxation techniques that those who were noncompliant (p=0.046). No differences were noted in intraoperative parameters, morbidity or mortality. CONCLUSION: This study demonstrates the beneficial effects self-hypnosis relaxation techniques on patients undergoing coronary artery bypass surgery. It also provides a framework to study complementary techniques and the limitations encountered.
Ashton RC Jr. Whitworth GC. Seldomridge JA. Shapiro PA. Michler RE.Smith CR. Rose EA. Fisher S. Oz MC. The effects of self-hypnosis on quality of life following coronary artery bypass surgery: preliminary results of a prospective, randomized trial. Journal of Alternative & Complementary Medicine 1995;1(3):285-90 The effects of complementary techniques and alternative medicine on allopathic therapies is generating much interest and research. To properly evaluate these techniques, well controlled studies are needed to corroborate the findings espoused by individuals practicing complementary medicine therapies. To this end, we evaluated the role of one of these therapies, self-hypnosis relaxation techniques, in a prospective, randomized trial to study its effects on quality of life after coronary artery bypass surgery. Subjects were randomized to a control group or a study group. Study group patients were taught self-hypnosis relaxation techniques the night prior to surgery. The control group received no such treatment. Patients then underwent routine cardiac management and care. The main endpoint of our study was quality of life, assessed by the Profile of Moods Scale. Results demonstrated that patients undergoing self-hypnosis the night prior to coronary artery bypass surgery were significantly more relaxed than the control group (p = 0.0317). Trends toward improvement were also noted in depression, anger, and fatigue. This study demonstrates the beneficial effects of self-hypnosis relaxation techniques on coronary surgery. This study also identifies endpoints and a study design that can be used to assess complementary medicine therapies. Results of this preliminary investigation are encouraging and demonstrate a need for further well-controlled studies.
Attias J, Shemesh Z, Sohmer H, Gold S, Shoham C, Faraggi D Comparison between self-hypnosis, masking and attentiveness for alleviation of chronic tinnitus. Audiology 1993;32(3):205-12 The efficacy of self-hypnosis (SH), masking (MA) and attentiveness to the patient's complaints (AT) in the alleviation of tinnitus was evaluated. Forty-five male patients close in age with chronic tinnitus related to acoustic trauma were assigned to three matched subgroups: SH, AT or MA. The therapeutic stimuli in the SH and MA sessions, recorded on audio cassettes, were given to the patients for use when needed. SH significantly reduced the tinnitus severity; AT partially relieved the tinnitus; MA did not have any significant effect.
Aydin S. Ercan M. Caskurlu T. Tasci AI. Karaman I. Odabas O. Yilmaz Y. Agargun MY. Kara H. Sevin G. Acupuncture and hypnotic suggestions in the treatment of non-organic male sexual dysfunction. Scandinavian Journal of Urology & Nephrology 1997;31(3):271-4 We have examined the effects of acupuncture and hypnotic suggestions, and compared them with placebo in the treatment of male sexual dysfunction with no detectable organic cause. The study comprised 15 men (mean age 36.7 +/- 10.43 years) who received acupuncture treatment, 16 men (mean age 38.4 +/- 10.75 years) who underwent hypnosis (mean age 35.3 +/- 11.52 years) and 29 men (mean age 36.2 +/- 11.38 years) who served as controls. They were interviewed periodically; the patients' reports were verified by interviewing their partners. Men who received placebo had a 43-47% improvement in sexual function, while the rates of improvement in the treated groups were higher, but not significantly so. The success rates of acupuncture and hypnotic suggestions were 60% and 75% respectively. Although the improvement was not statistically significant, treatment with acupuncture could be used as an adjuvant therapy in non-organic male sexual dysfunction. The only treatment superior to placebo seemed to be hypnosis. A more effective treatment may be obtained by combining these therapeutic modalities, but this needs further study.
Aydin S. Odabas O. Ercan M. Kara H. Agargun MY. Efficacy of testosterone, trazodone and hypnotic suggestion in the treatment of non-organic male sexual dysfunction. British Journal of Urology. 1996;77(2):256-60 OBJECTIVE: To examine the effects of hypnotic suggestions or the administration of testosterone or trazodone to impotent men with no detectable organic cause for the impotence. PATIENTS AND METHODS: The study comprised 79 men in whom clinical and laboratory examinations revealed no organic cause for their impotence: 20 men (mean age 38.7 +/- 11.47 years) received testosterone, 21 men (mean age 39.5 +/- 10.73 years) received trazodone, 20 men (mean age 34.2 +/- 11.69 years) underwent hypnosis and 18 men (mean age 39.1 +/- 11.46 years) served as controls. They were assessed by interview 4, 6 and 8 weeks after starting treatment: the patient's reports were verified by interviewing their partners. RESULTS: Men who received a placebo had a 39% improvement in sexual function, while the rates of improvement in the treated groups were higher, but not significantly so. The success rates of testosterone and trazodone treatment and hypnotic suggestions were 60%, 67% and 80%, respectively. CONCLUSION: Although the improvement was not statistically significant, treatment with testosterone and trazodone could be used as an adjuvant therapy in nonorganic male sexual dysfunction. The only treatment superior to placebo seemed to be hypnosis. A more effective treatment may be obtained by combining these therapeutic modalities, but this needs further study.
Baltar Lopez E La autorrelajacion como medio para reducir la algestesia en pruebas diagnosticas dolorosas Natura Medicatrix 1995;41:12-8 It taked place a study of painful perception and psycho-emotional component in two groups of patients in a random selection. It was made bone marrow biopsy and iliac crest myelogram in the patients. In the control group received a session of hypnosis of forty minutes; in this session were trained in autohypnosis technique to be applied in the moment of the painful tests. The comparison of outcomes shows a significant reduction of algesthesia and unpleasant emotions in the experimental group. The application of this technique was workable, effective and inexpensive.
Banerjee S. Srivastav A. Palan BM. Hypnosis and self-hypnosis in the management of nocturnal enuresis: a comparative study with imipramine therapy. American Journal of Clinical Hypnosis 1993;36(2):113-9 Various therapeutic modalities have been used for treating enuresis due to the lack of a single identifiable cause. We carried out a comparative study of imipramine and direct hypnotic suggestions with imagery used for the management of functional nocturnal enuresis. Enuretic children, ranging in age from 5 to 16 years, underwent 3 months of therapy with imipramine (N = 25) or hypnosis (N = 25). After termination of the active treatment, the hypnosis group continued practicing self-hypnosis daily during the follow-up period of another 6 months. Of the patients treated with imipramine, 76% had a positive response (all dry beds); for patients treated with hypnotic strategies, 72% responded positively. At the 9-month follow-up, 68% of patients in the hypnosis group maintained a positive response, whereas only 24% of the imipramine group did. Hypnosis and self-hypnosis strategies were found to be less effective in younger children (5-7 years old) compared to imipramine treatment. The treatment response was not related to the hypnotic responsivity of the patient in either group.
Barabasz AF. Treatment of insomnia in depressed patients by hypnosis and cerebral electrotherapy. American Journal of Clinical Hypnosis 1976;19(2):120-2 Investigated the influence of suggestion on recovery in the treatment of sleep disturbances by cerebral electrotherapy (CET). 60 adult psychiatric outpatients (diagnostic classification--mild depressive neurosis) were randomly assigned to 4 groups. Group A received CET only; Group B received a CET placebo; Group C received CET with hypnosis; and Group D received a CET placebo with hypnosis. Group A reported a significantly higher recovery than Group B, Group C a significantly higher recovery than Group A, and Group D a significantly higher recovery than Group B. No significant differences were found between Group C and Group D or between Group A and Group D. Findings support suggestion via passive hypnosis with CET as a powerful variable in the treatment of sleep disturbances with depressed patients.
Barber TX. Wilson SC. Hypnosis, suggestions, and altered states of consciousness: experimental evaluation of the new cognitive-behavioral theory and the traditional trance-state theory of "hypnosis". Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences 1977; 296:34-47 Sixty-six subjects were tested on a new scale for evaluating "hypnotic-like" experiences (The Creative Imagination Scale), which includes ten standardized test-suggestions (e.g. suggestions for arm heaviness, finger anesthesia, time distortion, and age regression). The subjects were randomly assigned to one of three treatment groups (Think- With Instructions, trance induction, and Control), with 22 subjects to each group. The new Cognitive-Behavioral Theory predicted that subjects exposed to preliminary instructions designed to demonstrate how to think and imagine along with the suggested themes (Think-With Instructions) would be more responsive to test-suggestions for anesthesia, time distortion, age regression, and so on, than subjects exposed to a trance- induction procedure. On the other hand, the traditional Trance State Theory predicted that a trance induction would be more effective than Think-With Instructions in enhancing responses to such suggestions. Subjects exposed to the Think-With Instructions obtained significantly higher scores on the test-suggestions than those exposed either to the traditional trance-induction procedure or to the control treatment. Scores of subjects who received the trance-induction procedure were not significantly different from those of the subjects who received the control treatment. The results thus supported the new Cognitive- Behavioral Theory and contradicted the traditional Trance State Theory of hypnosis. Two recent experiments, by De Stefano and by Katz, confirmed the above experimental results and offered further support for the Cognitive-Behavioral Theory. In both recent experiments, subjects randomly assigned to a "Think-With Instructions" treatment were more responsive to test-suggestions than those randomly assigned to a traditional trance-induction treatment.
Barkley RA. Hastings JE. Jackson TL. The effects of rapid smoking and hypnosis in the treatment of smoking behavior. International Journal of Clinical & Experimental Hypnosis 1977;25(1):7-17. 29 young adult volunteers were assigned to one of 3 treatment conditions and treated for their cigarette smoking over a 2-wk period. These conditions were group rapid smoking, group hypnosis, and an attention-placebo control group. All treatments produced significant reductions in average daily smoking rates during the treatment phase, but all Subjects returned to near baseline levels of smoking by the 6-wk follow-up. The rapid smoking and hypnosis groups did not differ from the control group in smoking rates at treatment termination or at the 6-wk follow-up. They also did not differ from the control group in the number of Subjects abstaining from smoking by treatment termination but did differ at follow-up. Eventually, at the 9-mo follow-up, only Subjects from the rapid smoking condition had significantly more abstainers than the control group. Results suggest that rapid smoking can work as effectively in group procedures as previous individualized approaches had demonstrated. Group hypnosis, while less effective than some previous individualized approaches had indicated, was only marginally less effective than the rapid smoking procedure. The use of abstinence rates as opposed to average rates of smoking is strongly recommended as the best measure of treament effectiveness for future research in this area. (German, French & Spanish summaries)
Beaugerie L. Burger AJ. Cadranel JF. Lamy P. Gendre JP. Le QuintrecY. Modulation of orocaecal transit time by hypnosis. Gut 1991;32(4):393-4 The ability of hypnosis to modulate the orocaecal transit time of 10 g lactulose was tested in six healthy volunteers. Orocaecal transit time was measured by the hydrogen breath test during three periods in random order. During the control period the subjects remained throughout the test in a semirecumbent position without moving. During the hypnotic relaxation period subjects were hypnotised before lactulose ingestion and were instructed to experience relaxation till the orocaecal transit time had elapsed. During the acceleration suggestion period subjects were hypnotised before lactulose ingestion and were repeatedly instructed to imagine the acceleration of lactulose through the intestine until transit time had elapsed. The mean orocaecal transit time was significantly longer during the hypnotic relaxation period (mean (SEM) 133 (8) min) than during the control period (93 (13) min). The mean orocaecal transit time during the acceleration suggestion period was 105 (26) minutes and was not significantly different from the mean transit time during the control period. The individual values during the acceleration suggestion period were scattered. We conclude that lactulose orocaecal transit time is delayed during hypnotic relaxation.
Bennett HL. Davis HS. Giannini JA. Non-verbal response to intraoperative conversation. British Journal of Anaesthesia 1985;57(2):174-9 In a double-blind study, 33 patients (herniorraphy, cholecystectomy and orthopaedic) were randomly assigned to either suggestion or control groups. Under known clinical levels of nitrous oxide and enflurane or halothane anaesthesia, suggestion patients were exposed to statements of the importance of touching their ear during a postoperative interview. Compared with controls, suggestion patients did touch their ear (tetrachoric correlation 0.61, P less than 0.001) and they did so more frequently (Mann-Whitney U test, P less than 0.02). All suggestion patients were completely amnesic for the intraoperative spoken suggestion, despite inquiries which included hypnotic regression to the operation.
Benson H. Frankel FH. Apfel R. Daniels MD. Schniewind HE. Nemiah JC. Sifneos PE. Crassweller KD. Greenwood MM. Kotch JB. Arns PA. Rosner B. Treatment of anxiety: a comparison of the usefulness of self-hypnosis and a meditational relaxation technique. An overview. Psychotherapy & Psychosomatics. 1978;30(3-4):229-42 We have investigated prospectively the efficacy of two nonpharmacologic relaxation techniques in the therapy of anxiety. A simple, meditational relaxation technique (MT) that elicits the changes of decreased sympathetic nervous system activity was compared to a self- hypnosis technique (HT) in which relaxation, with or without altered perceptions, was suggested. 32 patients with anxiety neurosis were divided into 2 groups on the basis of their responsivity to hypnosis: moderate-high and low responsivity. The MT or HT was then randomly assigned separately to each member of the two responsivity groups. Thus, 4 treatment groups were studied: moderate-high responsivity MT; low responsivity MT; moderate-high responsivity HT; and low responsivity HT. The low responsivity HT group, by definition largely incapable of achieving the altered perceptions essential to hypnosis, was designed as the control group. Patients were instructed to practice the assigned technique daily for 8 weeks. Change in anxiety was determined by three types of evaluation: psychiatric assessment; physiologic testing; and self-assessment. There was essentially no difference between the two techniques in therapeutic efficacy according to these evaluations. Psychiatric assessment revealed overall improvement in 34% of the patients and the self-rating assessment indicated improvement in 63% of the population. Patients who had moderate-high hypnotic responsivity, independent of the technique used, significantly improved on psychiatric assessment (p = 0.05) and decreased average systolic blood pressure from 126.1 to 122.5 mm Hg over the 8-week period (p = 0.048). The responsivity scores at the higher end of the hypnotic responsivity spectrum were proportionately correlated to greater decreases in systolic blood pressure (p = 0.075) and to improvement by psychiatric assessment (p = 0.003). There was, however, no consistent relation between hypnotic responsivity and the other assessments made, such as diastolic blood pressure, oxygen consumption, heart rate and the self-rating questionnaires. The meditational and self-hypnosis techniques employed in this investigation are simple to use and effective in the therapy of anxiety.
Blankfield RP. Zyzanski SJ. Flocke SA. Alemagno S. Scheurman K. Taped therapeutic suggestions and taped music as adjuncts in the care of coronary-artery-bypass patients. American Journal of Clinical Hypnosis. 1995;37(3):32-42 A randomized, single-blinded, placebo-controlled trial examined the benefits of taped therapeutic suggestions and taped music in coronary-artery-bypass patients. Sixty-six patients listened to either suggestion tapes or music tapes, intraoperatively and postoperatively; 29 patients listened to blank tapes intraoperatively and listened to no tapes postoperatively. Half the patients who listened to a tape found it helpful. There were no significant differences between groups in length of SICU or postoperative hospital stay, narcotic usage, nurse ratings of anxiety and progress, depression, activities of daily living, or cardiac symptoms. There were no significant differences in these same outcomes between the patients who were helped by the tapes and the patients not helped. These results suggest that if taped therapeutic suggestions have a measurable effect upon cardiac surgery patients, demonstrating this effect will require more detailed patient evaluations to identify subgroups of patients responsive to this type of intervention.
Block RI. Ghoneim MM. Sum Ping ST. Ali MA. Efficacy of therapeutic suggestions for improved postoperative recovery presented during general anesthesia. Anesthesiology 1991;75(5):746-55 There have been claims that the postoperative course of patients may be improved by presentation during general anesthesia of therapeutic suggestions which predict a rapid and comfortable postoperative recovery. This study evaluated the effectiveness of such therapeutic suggestions under double-blind and randomized conditions. A tape recording predicting a smooth recovery during a short postoperative stay without pain, nausea, or vomiting was played during anesthesia to about half the patients (N = 109), while the remaining, control patients were played a blank tape instead (N = 100). The patients were primarily undergoing operations on the fallopian tubes, total abdominal hysterectomy, vertical banding gastroplasty, cholecystectomy, and ovarian cystectomy or myomectomy. The anesthesia methods consisted of either isoflurane with 70% nitrous oxide in oxygen to produce end-tidal concentrations of 1.0, 1.3, or 1.5 MAC; or 70% nitrous oxide in oxygen combined with high or low doses of opioids. Assessments of the efficacy of the therapeutic suggestions in the recovery room and throughout the postoperative hospital stay included: the frequency of administration of analgesic and antiemetic drugs; opioid doses; the incidence of fever; nausea, retching, and vomiting; other gastrointestinal and urinary symptoms; ratings of pain; ratings of anxiety; global ratings of the patients' physical and psychological recoveries by the patients and their nurses; and length of postoperative hospital stay. There were no meaningful, significant differences in postoperative recovery of patients receiving therapeutic suggestions and controls. These negative results were not likely to be due to insensitivity of the assessments of recovery, as they showed meaningful interrelations among themselves and numerous differences in recovery following different types of surgery. Widespread utilization of therapeutic suggestions as a routine operating room procedure seems premature in the absence of adequate replication of previously published positive studies.
Boeke S. Bonke B. Bouwhuis-Hoogerwerf ML. Bovill JG. Zwaveling A. Effects of sounds presented during general anaesthesia on postoperative course. British Journal of Anaesthesia 1988;60(6):697-702 In a double-blind, randomized study, patients undergoing cholecystectomy were administered one of four different sounds during general anaesthesia: positive suggestions, nonsense suggestions, seaside sounds or sounds from the operating theatre. The effect of these sounds on the postoperative course was examined to assess intraoperative auditory registration. No differences were found between the four groups in postoperative variables.
Bonke B, Schmitz PI, Verhage F, Zwaveling A Clinical study of so-called unconscious perception during general anaesthesia British Journal of Anaesthesia 1986;58(9):957-64 Ninety-one patients undergoing biliary tract surgery were randomly assigned to one of three treatment groups in which different sounds were administered, by means of earphones, in a double-blind design. The effects of the administration of positive suggestions, noise or operating theatre sounds on the postoperative course were studied. Results showed that exposure to positive suggestions during general anaesthesia, as compared with noise or operating theatre sounds, protected patients older than 55 yr against prolonged postoperative stay in hospital.
Bonke B. Van Dam ME. Van Kleff JW. Slijper FM. Implicit memory tested in children during inhalation anaesthesia. Anaesthesia 1992;47(9):747-9 Memory for stimuli presented during inhalation anaesthesia was tested in 80 children undergoing eye surgery. Two groups were exposed, in a random double-blind study, to repeated neutral phrases including either the colour orange or green. A postoperative colouring task was used as a test of implicit memory to detect any preference for the colour named under anaesthesia. No colour preference attributable to implicit memory could be demonstrated. One patient had a distinct preference for the named colour. No patient remembered any intra-operative events.
Bornstein PH. Devine DA. Covert modeling-hypnosis in the treatment of obesity. Psychotherapy: Theory, Research Practice 1980;17(3):272-276. Investigated the efficacy of a covert modeling/hypnosis treatment package in the control of obesity. 48 overweight female volunteers (who had been administered the Harvard Group Scale of Hypnotic Susceptibility, Eating Patterns Questionnaire, and Rotter's Internal-External Locus of Control Scale) were randomly assigned to 1 of the following groups: (a) covert modeling/hypnosis, (b) covert modeling, (c) no-model scene control, and (d) minimal treatment (where Subjects received a shortened version of the covert modeling/hypnosis procedure following an 8-wk no-treatment period). Results indicate a significant effect for weight loss from pretreatment to follow-up across all groups combined. Proportion weight loss measures indicated significantly greater weight loss only for the covert modeling/hypnosis group as compared to the no-model controls. Implications for combining behavior therapy and hypnotic techniques are discussed.
Boutin GE. Tosi DJ. Modification of irrational ideas and test anxiety through rational stage directed hypnotherapy RSDH. Journal of Clinical Psychology 1983;39(3):382-91 Examined the effects of four treatment conditions on the modification of Irrational Ideas and test anxiety in female nursing students. The treatments were Rational Stage Directed Hypnotherapy, a cognitive behavioral approach that utilized hypnosis and vivid-emotive-imagery, a hypnosis-only treatment, a placebo condition, and a no-treatment control. The 48 Ss were assigned randomly to one of these treatment groups, which met for 1 hour per week for 6 consecutive weeks with in-vivo homework assignments also utilized. Statistically significant treatment effects on cognitive, affective, behavioral, and physiological measures were noted for both the RSDH and hypnosis group at the posttest and at a 2-month follow-up. Post-hoc analyses revealed the RSDH treatment group to be significantly more effective than the hypnosis only group on both the post- and follow-up tests. The placebo and control groups showed no significant effects either at post-treatment or at follow-up.
Bregman NJ. McAllister HA. Role of suggestions in digital skin temperature: implications for temperature biofeedback research. International Journal of Neuroscience 1985;27(1-2):115-20 The purpose of the present experiment was to explore the role suggestions and assessment procedures play in affecting digital skin temperature. Four different types of suggestions were given subjects (warm, cool, pseudo (electronic terms), and no suggestions). Twenty-five subjects were randomly assigned to the four experimental conditions. The data were analyzed by three popular assessment procedures typically found in the literature. As predicted, subjects displayed significant decreases in skin temperature each day regardless of the training condition they were in. The assessment procedures produced differential results.
Brodeur JB, Kurtz RM, Strube MJ Hypnotic susceptibility order effects in walking analgesia Int J Clin Exp Hypn 1998 Jul;46(3):240-9 This study reexamined Spanos, Hodgins, Stam, and Gwynn's (1984) contention that susceptibility testing order effects generated a relationship between walking analgesia pain reduction and level of hypnotic responsiveness. Undergraduate volunteers with no previous hypnosis experience were randomly assigned to 2 groups. Group 1 (n = 69) first received a cold pressor pain protocol, and then was administered the Stanford Hypnotic Susceptibility Scale, Form C (SHSS:C). Group 2 (n = 69) was administered the SHSS:C prior to the cold pressor pain protocol. Our findings do not support Spanos, Hodgins et al.'s contention that sucsceptibility testing order effects generate the often reported relationship between walking analgesia and level of hypnotic responsiveness. We found significant partial correlation coefficients between the SHSS:C and nonhypnotic pain reduction regardless of order of susceptibility testing. Implications regarding the adequacy of design-generated expectancies to explain hypnotic analgesia phenomena were examined.
Bruck M. Ceci SJ. Francoeur E. Barr R. "I hardly cried when I got my shot:" Influencing children's reports about a visit to their pediatrician. Child Development 1995;66(1):193-208 We examined, in 2 phases, the influence of postevent suggestions on children's reports of their visits to a pediatrician. Phase 1 examined the effect of giving one of 3 types of feedback to 5-year-old children immediately following their Diphtheria Pertussis Tetanus (DPT) inoculation. Children were given pain-affirming feedback (the shot hurt), pain-denying feedback (the shot did not hurt), or neutral feedback (the shot is over). 1 week later, they did not differ in their reports concerning how much the shot hurt or how much they cried. In Phase 2, the same children were visited approximately 1 year after their inoculation. During 3 separate visits, they were either given additional pain-denying or neutral feedback. They were also given misleading or nonmisleading information about the actions of the pediatrician and the assistant. Children given pain-denying feedback reported that they cried less and that the shot hurt less than did children given neutral feedback. Those who were given misleading information about the actions of the assistant and the pediatrician made more false allegations about their actions than did children who were not given this information. These results challenge the view that suggestibility effects are confined to peripheral, nonaction events; in this study children's reports about salient actions involving their own bodies in stressful conditions were influenced.
Buchser E. Burnand B. Sprunger AL. Clemence A. Lepage C. Martin Y.Chedel D. Guex P. Sloutskis D. Rumley R. Hypnosis and self-hypnosis, administered and taught by nurses, for the reduction of chronic pain: a controlled clinical trial. Schweizerische Medizinische Wochenschrift - Supplementum 1994;62:77-81 Hypnosis is a technique whereby an individual can reach a particular state, quite unrelated to sleep, characterized by aroused, attentive and focused concentration. Although there are numerous clinical applications of hypnosis, there are virtually no controlled clinical trials to support its effectiveness. We propose a controlled randomized clinical trial comparing a "control" group of chronic pain patients treated by a programme including conventional oral medication combined with various nerve blocks and/or spinal administration of drugs, with a "treatment" group having a similar treatment programme plus hypnosis carried out by nurses. Outcome measurements include mainly the variation of pain intensity, the amount of analgesic drug consumption, spontaneous physical activity, and the change in health-related quality of life. The assessment of the outcome variable is done at the initial workup, weekly for the first 3 weeks, and at 6 and 12 weeks. A follow-up survey is conducted at 6 months.
Campbell DF. Dixon JK. Sanderford LD. Denicola MA. Relaxation: its effect on the nutritional status and performance status of clients with cancer. Journal of the American Dietetic Association 1984;84(2):201-4 Relaxation was used to promote normal food consumption patterns among persons with cancer. As part of a larger study, 22 persons with cancer were randomly assigned to receive instruction and reinforcement in a relaxation technique to be used preprandially. The relaxation procedure included four components: (a) deep abdominal breathing, (b) tensing and relaxing of various body parts, (c) relaxation by autosuggestion, and (d) voluntary image control. Twelve clients complied with relaxation instructions in part, and 10 did not. Among compliers, 75% experienced desirable weight change over a six-week period. Performance status, measured by the Karnofsky scale, improved for 33% and worsened for 17% over eight weeks. Research has shown relaxation to be an effective measure in relation to pain, hypertension, and other conditions. These preliminary results now suggest that relaxation may also be effective in treating the eating problems of the person with cancer, leading to improvement in weight and performance status.
Cochrane G. Friesen J. Hypnotherapy in weight loss treatment. Journal of Consulting & Clinical Psychology 1986;54(4):489-92 Investigated the effects of hypnosis as a treatment for weight loss among women. The sample consisted of 60 women (aged 20-65 yrs) who were at least 20% overweight and were not in any other treatment program. Six client variables (suggestibility, self-concept, quality of family origin, age of obesity onset, education level, and socioeconomic status (SES)) and 1 process variable (multimodal imagery) were analyzed in relation to the dependent variable (weight loss). Two experimental groups, hypnosis plus audiotapes and hypnosis without audiotapes, and the control group were investigated for weight loss immediately after treatment and again after a 6-mo follow-up. The primary hypothesis that hypnosis is an effective treatment for weight loss was confirmed, but the 7 concomitant variables and the use of audiotapes were not significant contributors to weight loss.
Colgan SM, Faragher EB, Whorwell PJ Controlled trial of hypnotherapy in relapse prevention of duodenal ulceration Lancet 1988;1(8598):1299-300 30 patients with rapidly relapsing duodenal ulceration were studied to assess the possible benefit of hypnotherapy in relapse prevention. After the ulcer had healed on treatment with ranitidine, the drug was continued for a further 10 weeks during which time patients received either hypnotherapy or no hypnotherapy. The two randomly selected groups were comparable in terms of age, sex, smoking habits, and alcohol consumption. Follow-up of both groups of patients was continued for 12 months after the cessation of ranitidine. After 1 year, 8(53%) of the hypnotherapy patients and 15(100%) of the control subjects had relapsed. The results of this study suggest that hypnotherapy may be a useful therapeutic adjunct for some patients with chronic recurrent duodenal ulceration.
Council JR. Kirsch I. Vickery AR. Carlson D. "Trance" versus "skill" hypnotic inductions: the effects of credibility, expectancy, and experimenter modeling. Journal of Consulting & Clinical Psychology 1983;51(3):432-40 A hypnotic induction procedure based on social learning principles (skill induction) was compared with a traditional eye-fixation/relaxation trance induction, a highly credible placebo induction, and a no induction base rate control. The trance induction surpassed the skill induction only on the Field Inventory, a measure of hypnotic depth that contains items corresponding to suggestions contained in the trance induction. Experimenter modeling was not found to enhance the effectiveness of the skill induction. Skill and trance inductions elicited slightly higher behavioral scores on the Stanford Hypnotic Susceptibility Scale: Form C than did the placebo induction. However, this difference was not obtained on other measures of hypnotic responsivity and depth. Significant correlations were found between expectancy, absorption, and responsiveness on all dependent measures. Multiple regression analyses indicated that the relationship between absorption and responsivity was mediated by expectancy. The results are interpreted as supporting the hypotheses that hypnotic responses are elicited by the expectancy for their occurrence and that induction procedures are a means of increasing subjects' expectancies for hypnotic responses.
Crawford HJ. Allen SN. Paired-associate learning and recall of high and low imagery words: moderating effects of hypnosis, hypnotic susceptibility level, and visualization abilities. American Journal of Psychology. 1996;109(3):353-72 Relationships between recall of low and high imagery paired-associate (P-A) words and hypnotic susceptibility, and the influence of hypnosis on recall as moderated by hypnotic level were examined. Subjects were assessed on 2 hypnotic susceptibility scales [Harvard Group Scale of Hypnotic Susceptibility; Stanford Hypnotic Susceptibility Scale, Form C (SHSS:C)]. Forty-one low (0-4 SHSS:C) and 41 highly (9-12 SHSS:C) hypnotizable college students were assigned to 1 of 4 experimental groups: waking-hypnosis, hypnosis-waking, waking-waking, or hypnosis-hypnosis. Recall was significantly better for high than low imagery words. In the more sensitive within-subjects design, high hypnotizables recalled more P-A words during hypnosis than waking, and lows did not differ. In the between-subjects design, hypnotic level was not a moderator of performance during hypnosis. Low hypnotizables recalled more words in the within-subjects design. Visualization ability was a poor moderator of imagery-mediated learning. High imagery recall correlated significantly with Marks's (1973) Vividness of Visual Imagery Questionnaire (.25) and Paivio and Harshman's (1983) Individual Differences Questionnaire (IDQ) Verbal scale (.29 1973;), but not with the IDQ Imagery scale, the Mental Rotations Test (Vandenberg & Kuse
Crawford HJ. Harrison DW. Kapelis L. Visual field asymmetry in facial affect perception: moderating effects of hypnosis, hypnotic susceptibility level, absorption, and sustained attentional abilities. International Journal of Neuroscience. 1995;82(1-2):11-23 Effects of hypnotic level, affect valence and cerebral asymmetry on reaction time (RT) in the discrimination of Ekman and Friesen's (1978) stimuli of angry and happy faces were studied in counterbalanced conditions of waking and hypnosis. Assessed previously on two hypnotic susceptibility scales [Harvard Group Scale of Hypnotic Susceptibility; Stanford Hypnotic Susceptibility Scale, Form C (SHSSC)], non-depressed subjects were 16 low (0-4 SHSSC) and 17 highly (10-12 SHSSC) hypnotizable, right-handed college students. Subjects were required to identify affects of faces, presented tachistoscopically to left (LVF) or right (RVF) visual fields, by using a forced-choice RT paradigm. Highs were significantly faster than lows in angry and happy affect recognition. Hypnosis had no significant effects. For highs only, angry emotional valence was identified faster when presented to the right hemisphere (LVF), but there were no significant hemispheric effects for happy emotional valence. For lows there were no hemispheric differences. Gender was a nonsignificant factor. Significant correlations showed that faster reaction times to angry and happy stimuli, in both LVF and RVF in waking and hypnosis, were obtained by subjects who reported more deeply absorbed and extremely focused and sustained attention on the Tellegen (1982) Absorption Scale and a subscale of the Differential Attentional Processes Inventory (Grumbles & Crawford, 1981). Vividness of Visual Imagery Questionnaire (Marks, 1973) and Affect Intensity Measure (Larsen, 1985), in general, did not correlate with RTs. The potential role of the fronto-limbic attentional system in the recognition of external visual sensory affect is discussed.