Creative Reframing


A wise old gentleman had retired and bought himself a modest home near a school. He spent the first few weeks of his retirement in peace and contentment. However, when the new school year began, the very next afternoon three young boys, full of youthful exuberance and post school enthusiasm, came down his street, banging merrily on every dustbin they encountered. The crashing percussion continued day after day, until finally the wise old man decided it was time to take some action.

The next afternoon, he walked out to meet the young percussionists as they banged their way down the street. He stopped them and said, “You boys are a lot of fun. I like to see you express your exuberance like that. In fact, I used to do the same thing when I was your age. Will you do me a favour? I’ll give you each a dollar if you’ll promise to come around every day and do your thing.” The kids were elated and continued to do a bang-up job on the dustbins.

After a few days, the old-timer greeted the kids again, but this time he had a sad smile on his face. “This recessions really putting a big dent in my income,” he told them. “From now on, I’ll only be able to pay you 50 cents to beat on the cans.” The noisemakers were obviously displeased, but they accepted his offer and continued their afternoon ruckus. A few days later, the wily retiree approached them again as they drummed their way down the street.

“Look,” he said, “I haven’t received my Social Security check yet, so I’m not going to be able to give you more than 25 cents. Will that be okay?” “A quarter?” the drum leader exclaimed. “If you think were going to waste our time, beating these cans around for a quarter, you’re mad! No way, we quit!” And the old man enjoyed peace and serenity for the rest of his days.

Changes In Treatment Approaches For PTSD


Below is an article taken from the APA website that I find extremely interesting and reassuring that the military is not restricting themselves to CBT and EMDR in treating serving personnel struggling with PTSD.

A psychodynamic treatment for PTSD shows promise for soldiers
March 2012, Vol 43, No. 3
Print version: page 11

PTSD
While cognitive-behavioral therapy remains the most well-researched treatment for post-traumatic stress disorder, it doesn’t help all patients. That’s especially true for service members who have been perpetrators as well as victims of violence, says Russell B. Carr, MD, an Army psychiatrist.
“It’s a much more complicated experience, and they often feel a lot of shame in addition to the usual PTSD symptoms,” he says.

For the past six years, Carr has been working with soldiers who haven’t responded to cognitive-behavioral therapy, and he’s developed a new treatment rooted in intersubjective systems theory. This modern take on psychoanalysis pioneered by Robert Stolorow, PhD, posits that the heart of trauma is shame and isolation.
Carr’s therapy, described in the October 2011 issue of Psychoanalytic Psychology, has shown promise helping soldiers who haven’t responded to CBT by addressing the existential dread dredged up by trauma, and the feeling that their entire world has lost meaning. Though Carr’s goals are ambitious, his intervention is relatively short—requiring twice-weekly sessions for up to three months. As a result, the therapist must clearly define goals, keep conversations on track and quickly establish rapport with clients, Carr found.

Short-term therapy—which is typical of CBT, but less common with psychoanalytic approaches—is often the only option in military settings, he says.
“In the military, there is frequently the situation where a patient or therapist is leaving soon,” says Carr. “It’s a transient population, and it limits the length of time we have to work together.”

A key part of intersubjective therapy is helping clients put their feelings around traumatic experiences into words. These feelings aren’t always negative. One patient described in the article found he enjoyed the smell of burning human flesh, and was later horrified and ashamed of his initial reaction. By expressing empathy and not rejecting the soldier, Carr helped the soldier process the experience and reconnect with the civilian world.

Convincing soldiers that a therapist—as well as friends and family—can understand a little of what they are going through lessens their PTSD symptoms, Carr found. In some cases, soldiers even learn from the experience, he says. “Recognizing the fragility of life, you can refocus on what’s important to you, and not waste time on things that aren’t.”
—S. Dingfelder

Common Myths About Mental Illness


There are many myths and misconceptions about mental illness and stereotyping people and stigmatising them is extremely unhelpful fallout of these, which very often makes the symptoms and conditions worse for the individuals.

It’s human nature to judge people from first impressions, but, before you make your mind up about someone, take a few moments to think again about why that person might be behaving and or speaking the way they are.

Here are a few popular myths and the facts about mental illness.


Myth #1: Mental illnesses are not true illnesses like cancer or heart disease.

Fact: A physical illness like a heart attack can easily be detected by some simple tests. In contrast, mental illness is invisible and can’t be observed by the general public. This can lead to judgment and to prejudice.


Myth #2: People with diagnosed with a mental Illness tend to have a lower IQ.

Fact: Mental Illness affects people across the entire IQ spectrum. In fact, many extremely intelligent people have been diagnosed with mental illness, are able hold down powerful jobs, and carry a high level of responsibility.


Myth #3: Most of those who suffer from mental illness are violent.

Fact: Very few sufferers are actually violent. In fact, research indicates that they are more likely to be victims of violence than perpetrators of violence.


Myth #4: It is mainly women who suffer from mental illness.

Fact: There are millions of people – both men and women – in all of the different mental illness categories.


Myth #5: Most people diagnosed with mental illness were abused as children.

Fact: Although the incidence of some types of mental illness is more highly correlated with childhood abuse, there are many, many people who have never been abused.


Myth #6: A lot of those who claim to be mentally ill are basically just selfish, or self-centred, individuals.

Fact: Many forms of mental illness have been shown to have their roots in chemical and neurological problems in the brains. They are not character defects.


Myth #7: People with mental illness can get better if they just work a bit harder at getting over their issues.

Fact: Although mental illness symptoms can often be managed successfully through a combination of medication and counselling, it is likely that suffers will continue to struggle throughout their life. It’s not just a matter of “trying a bit harder”.


Myth #8: Those who suffer from mental illness will never recover from their disorder.

Fact: Although many sufferers will continue to battle, or will find their symptoms resurface overtime, they can often manage these successfully. Thus, most of them will lead a fulfilling life.


If you’re struggling with any mental health issues and not getting the help you need then please get in touch with me and I will do my bets to get you the help you need.

Simon

The Power of the Mind-Body Connection



I work with clients for all sorts of reasons to help them overcome and move beyond what they once believed held them back. These can be physical as well as psychological obstacles and they are always interconnected because of the mind-body link and frequently, many of these health problems occur because of a disconnect between the mind and the body due to all manner of external and internal influences. 

It never ceases to amaze me what people can achieve when they reconnect mind and body, dissolving limiting beliefs and replacing them with new empowering versions that support their new mindset and propel them into an exciting future full of possibilities.

I have been working with one particular client this year who has kindly sent me this testimonial and allowed me to share it with you. Mandy has worked incredibly hard on adapting her new found skills and beliefs in order to change her self perception, this has enabled her to challenge her old way of thinking and push way beyond those old boundaries and extend them creating a new field of opportunities and experiences. It’s been a pleasure and a privilege to see happening over the last few months. I do want to add that this has been in conjunction with Mandy discussing things with her GP, which is something I strongly recommend when any form of medication and existing treatment is involved.

I hope this provides some of you with the inspiration and motivation to do something similar for yourselves. 

Take it away Mandy:
Life Design / Brain2Body – Amanda Phillipson 

When I first started working with Simon I was suffering from CFS / ME. Having taken a year off I’d made it back to work with a combination of pacing and Graded Exercise Therapy but my quality of life was still poor as I didn’t have the energy to do anything else. Now, 5 months afternoon beginning Simon’s programme, I am free of CFS / ME and enjoying rebuilding my life, living my life the way I want to and being able to explore new possibilities. I’ve never said this about anything I’ve ever done before, but this programme has quite literally turned my life around and enabled me to enjoy life again.

So if you’re feeling stuck, feel that the way you are is just how it is always going to be, think again. Challenge yourself, challenge the medical system to do more for you than the bare minimum to get you going. Do not accept the status quo when it comes to your health and well being, your life. Your life is there to be lived so get out there and find what you need that enables you to live it to its fullest because we only get one shot at it. Make it count.

Have a great week.

Simon

It Takes Perseverance to Conquer Your Mountains



It’s been a personally tough time over the last eighteen months with a huge dip in business due to the impact of the state of the oil and gas industry in the north east of Scotland and the quite significant tsunami of destruction that it sent outwards. It’s been tough particularly recently with injuries, surgery and personal issues to sort out and with not being able to drive at the moment and with not sleeping well after having my shoulder repaired yet again, I have had plenty of time to think about what’s going on and look for ways to resolve the problems. I have looked back at how I resolved other problems in my life, what I did and what it took for me to resolve them. 

It’s actually something I enjoy doing, taking time in the early hours, a way to spend some time for myself and get refocused. This morning I found myself focusing on what it takes to be successful in any endeavour and I kept coming back to the word perseverance.

Being a Royal Marine took a huge amount of perseverance and there were times in training, the few times you get any time to yourself,which was usually sat on the toilet, where I thought to myself ‘what the fuck am I doing here, this is insane?!!’
 8 months of patience and staying focused and I finally completed Royal Marines Basic Training and I can not tell you how amazing that feels when it’s done and you are handed your Green Beret.

It doesn’t matter if it’s a military training course, a black belt or a weight loss/ body composition goal… at the very heart of it is perseverance.
Since then I’ve completed many courses, some extremely physically demanding, some mentally and some a mix of both. Since then I’ve set myself challenges in business and in my personal life and almost everything I set my heart on achieving I have achieved so far. There have been some heroic failures along the way and some goals I haven’t yet reached and no matter how frustrating that is I never lose sight of what I’m aiming for, well, not completely anyway. 

This is what got me thinking this morning, I realised I have lost my way a little recently, I’ve lost sight of what I’m aiming for in business and in my personal life. I’ve begun to doubt myself. Doubt whether I really want what I’d set myself, doubt my ability to even get anywhere near it. I felt myself feeling like giving up because it’s taking too much out of me. Needless to say this morning was a bit of an emotional roller coaster that left me reeling, spinning and not knowing the difference between my arse and my elbow. In all honesty I found it a bit disturbing.
I haven’t felt like this in a long time and I was in a similar situation then as well so in hindsight, it’s not surprising that I flipped back in time to that same emotional state.
I’ve had to dig deep into my reserves of perseverance many times in my life. I’ve lost my way before and at one point I was fat and out of shape, disillusioned, angry, probably depressed and a nightmare to live with.
So this afternoon as I have done before, I made the decision to change the track of my thoughts, and as it was before, it wasn’t easy. But I persevered and I still am.

 So what does it take. Some magical ability to simply head down a road with your blinkers on and just get shit done?

Not entirely, although at times this can help too.
 There is a system involved which ultimately allows you to persevere through anything. It’s a mindset that you must be willing to adopt.

The mindset is comprised of a few key elements. These include grit, determination, optimism and realism.
 The process runs like this:

You set your goal – It doesn’t matter what it is. Whether it’s passing a course or losing 60 lbs. 

You make your plan and begin to take the small steps toward it every single day, until you arrive there. What happens in the middle is called perseverance, it’s not reserved for the super-elite. We can all learn this life altering trait.

 

Grit, determination, optimism and realism are the foundation of perseverance.

 Let me talk you through them to see if you might have these traits hiding inside you too. (I’ll let you into a little secret…yes you do)

 The dictionary defines Grit as having courage, resolve and strength of character. Icon early think that grit is an awesome word and very apt.

Courage is simply having fear and pushing through it no matter what and harassing and channelising that energy to drive you towards your goal.
Resolve is the mental strength and strength of character is knowing that once you commit to something, you must do what you say you will do. Keeping the promise to yourself most importantly and then to others secondly.
 Determination is having a firmness of purpose. You make your decision to achieve your goal and you will not be swayed.

Optimism is having hopefulness and confidence about what it is that you are doing and that you will be successful. It doesn’t matter if you are in a body transformation phase or seeking a promotion at work. If you are optimistic about it, that energy is carried throughout your body and to those around you.
Realism is the attitude and practice of taking something as it is and moving forward accordingly. For example, you missed a workout…who cares, we all do. Get back on the train and continue moving forward.
 Now not all of you will be able to relate to this yet some of you will. Can you imagine for a second what it would take to persevere through an armed conflict or a lengthy battle with a determined enemy. Even the residual issues many soldiers and medics face upon arriving home having been exposed to multiple atrocities, suffering the mental anguish and pushing through it to continue to serve their fellow man.

 Our country was built on the backs of soldiers who could persevere, and having been one I know what it takes…and the fact is you can do it too… Every soldier would want you to learn that from them.

 So this week be thankful and learn to apply the elements that make up the recipe for perseverance, dish yourself up a large serving and use it to get you through whatever you set your mind to.

 Be bold, be strong, be brave, persevere and fight for what you want in this life.

Simon

The Language of Success


Now I realise that this may sound a little odd to some of you, but often, “trying harder” doesn’t always make things better or solve your problems. Sometimes you need to do something radically different to in order achieve your goals.When you find yourself stuck in one spot for too long you often need to break out of your comfort zone or pattern of behaviour in order to get to where you want to go.


This is the case with many things including work, relationships and also your physical fitness.

Whats really interesting (and encouraging) is that this does NOT always mean working harder.

Now don’t get me wrong, I’m not suggesting you don’t need to work hard to achieve your goals, in fact, if the goal/s set yourself are enough of a stretch then you will have to work hard for sure, you will also have to work smart too. I love the quote from Gary Player, the golfer renowned for being able to get himself out of trouble with consummate ease, when he overheard a guy in the crowd say, “he is so lucky” and Gary Player replied, “It’s funny, the more I practice the luckier I get.”

It’s just that sometimes working harder is not the right answer to being successful, sometimes we just need to work smarter.

Not everything can be fixed with a hammer, no matter how hard you swing, sometimes you need a different tool.

Over the past two decades I have worked with thousands of people both online and in person and along the way I have discovered little words/phrases that can pretty much predict a persons success or failure.

In fact, whenever I hear these words I can pretty much guarantee that the person saying them will not be successful.

These words are:

  • I’ll try to get the work done.
  • I’ll try to make healthy food choices.
  • I’ll try to start exercise or exercise more often.
  • I’ll try to get to bed earlier.
  • I hope so.
  • I hope I can do it.
  • I hope I can achieve that.
  • I hope I’ll make it.

Words and phrases like this tend to lead us to presuppose that we will fail and that we don’t really believe that we can achieve, so when we don’t we aren’t too disappointed. In essence we set ourselves up for failure.

If these are your answer to ANYTHING that you know you must do in order to achieve your goal, then I suggest you revisit just how important your goal is to you and listen to the kinds of words and phrases you use and write when talking about your goals.

Small changes in how you think, speak and write can make a huge difference to your ability to succeed.

I want you to succeed and I know that you can when you set your mind on the track from the beginning.

Here’s to your success.

Hypnosis and Control of Bleeding and Haemophilia


There are numerous accounts of the human ability to affect blood flow using mind-body techniques. Stories such as Milton Erickson, MDʼs well known account of using hypnosis to control severe bleeding in his hemophiliac son after an accident, to Martin Rossman, MDʼs less well known but equally dramatic story of using hypnosis in the Emergency Room with a woman to stop her haemorrhaging. However, the widespread use of techniques such as Guided Imagery and Hypnosis for blood control will not be embraced by the medical community without hard science to back up the contentions.

Fortunately, several published studies present corroborating evidence. Biofeedback training, of course, has a long and well-documented history of being able to affect perfusion.

A recent study showed that biofeedback-assisted relaxation training was 87.5% effective in increasing peripheral perfusion (and, thereby, healing) in patients with foot ulcers. The field of hypnosis also has many studies related to pain management in surgery, and studies showing hypnosisʼ ability to affect blood flow are beginning to show up in the literature. Studies with burn patients have shown that hypnosis can significantly improve wound healing by increasing blood flow to the affected area. Subjects were able to achieve significant increases in hand warming using hypnotically-induced vasodilation. Haemo-dynamic measurements of systolic blood pressure, arterial blood flow, and resistance all changed appropriately when hypnotised subjects believed they were donating blood.

As an indication that these so-called autonomic functions can be patient controlled during surgery, one matched, controlled study of maxillofacial surgery patients receiving pre-, post- and/or peri-operative hypnotic suggestion had up to a 30% reduction in blood loss. The health benefits to the patient and savings to hospitals with these kinds of blood loss reductions are considerable. A further study showed that intra-operative and post-op capillary bleeding can be reduced using hypnosis, even in haemophiliac dental patients.

A most impressive study is one in which 121 patients used hypnosedation during endocrine surgical procedures. It has become an expectation from patients who use mind-body modalities for these patients needed significantly less pain medication. Of even greater implication, however, is the fact that all surgeons in these 121 procedures reported better operating conditions (estimated by the visual analog scale), and the researchers attributed this to reduced bleeding in the operative field. Furthermore, no patients were required to convert to general anesthesia during any of the procedures.

These and other factors — high patient satisfaction, better surgical convalescence, turn beds faster, lower use of resources, fewer demands on personnel, fewer follow-up visits by physicians — reduce the socio-economic impact of patient treatment, especially in the area of in- patient surgery.

References

Rice B, Kalker AJ, Schindler JV, Dixon RM. “Effect of biofeedback-assisted relaxation training on foot ulcer healing.” J Am Podiatr Med Assoc 2001 Mar;91(3):132-41.
Moore L and Kaplan J. Hypnotically Accelerated Burn Wound Healing. Am J Clin Hypn 1983 Jul;26(1):16-9.

Moore LE, Wiesner SL. Hypnotically-induced vasodilation in the treatment of repetitive strain injuries. Am J Clin Hypn 1996 Oct;39(2):97-104. Casiglia E, Mazza A, Ginocchio G, Onesto C, Pessina AC, Rossi A, Cavatton G, Marotti A. “Hemodynamics following real and hypnosis- simulated phlebotomy.” Am J Clin Hypn 1997 Jul;40(1):368-75.

Enqvist B, von Konow L, Bystedt H. “Pre- and perioperative suggestion in maxillofacial surgery: effects on blood loss and recovery.” Int J Clin Exp Hypn 1995 Jul;43(3):284-94.
Lucas ON. “The use of hypnosis in hemophilia dental care.” Ann N Y Acad Sci 1975 Jan 20;240:263-6.
Meurisse M. Faymonville ME, Joris J, Nguyen Dang D, Defechereux T, Hamoir E. “Service de Chirurgie des Glandes Endocrines et Transplantation, Centre

Hospitalier Universitaire de Liege, Belgique.” Ann Endocrinol (Paris) 1996;57(6):494-501.

Haemophilia

Study 1: Suggestions Reduce Blood Loss in Surgery
Preoperative Instructions for Decreased Bleeding During Spine Surgery
http://journals.lww.com/anesthesiology/Citation/1986/09001/Preoperative_Instructions_for_Decreased_Bleeding.244.aspx

Results: Those who were given preoperative suggestions for the blood to move away during surgery – so the body could conserve blood – lost significantly less blood than those in both the control and relaxation groups.

Notes: Ninety-two patients who were scheduled for spinal surgery were randomly divided into three groups. One served as the control, the second were given suggestions for relaxation, while the third were given preoperative suggestions that the blood would leave the area where the surgery was to take place at the start of the operation and then remain away until it was complete. This third group was also given suggestions about the importance of blood conservation. The authors note that generally blood loss during surgical procedures can vary wildly between different patients and is unpredictable. For certain types of surgeries, this blood loss often requires transfusions. Giving preoperative suggestions about decreased bleeding could help with these issues.

Anaesthesiology, Sept. 1986, Vol.65 A246
By: H. L. Bennett, Ph.D., D. R. Benson, D. A. Kuiken, Dept. of Anesthesiology and Orthopedic Surgery, UC Davis Medical Center, Sacramento California

Study 2: Case Study – Hypnosis to Treat Gastrointestinal Bleeding
Hypnotic Control of Upper Gastrointestinal Hemorrhage: A Case Report
http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/00029157.1984.10402584?journalCode=ujhy20

Results: After treatment with hypnosis, the patient (who was suffering from upper gastrointestinal tract bleeding) was discharged from the hospital without the need for surgical intervention.

Notes: This paper presents the successful treatment with hypnosis of a patient with upper gastrointestinal tract bleeding. After treatment, the patient was discharged from the hospital without the need for surgical intervention.

American Journal of Clinical Hypnosis, Volume 27, Issue 1, 1984
By: Emil G. Bishay M.D.a, Grant Stevensa and Chingmuh Lee, UCLA School of Medicine

Hemophilia Disorder Disease Word in Blood Stream in Red Cells

Study 3: Hypnosis Helps Hemophiliacs Avoid Transfusions, Decreases Risk of Other Health Problems, and Increases Quality of Life
The Use of Hypnosis with Hemophilia
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/1289965

Results: The hemophiliacs using hypnosis realized a reduction in the need for transfusions, which results in a decrease in the development of inhibitors, less potential exposure to dangers such as the AIDS virus and a lower incidence of liver and kidney damage. A decrease in the frequency and severity of bleeding episodes results in less morbidity and better coping in the face of HIV infection. Self-hypnosis has provided many bleeders with increased feelings of control and confidence and improved the quality of their lives.

Notes: The Colorado Health Sciences Center’s program to treat hemophiliacs using hypnosis is described.

Psychiatr Med. 1992;10(4):89-98
By: W. LaBaw, University of Colorado Health Sciences Center, Denver

Study 4: Hypnosis for Hemophilia Dental Care to Decrease Bleeding
The Use of Hypnosis in Hemophilia Dental Care
http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.1749-6632.1975.tb53358.x/abstract

Results: This paper discusses how hypnosis can decrease bleeding during dental care and lower the anxiety of hemophiliacs about dental procedures.

Notes: The author describes the experiences of a dental clinic that uses hypnosis for hemophiliacs undergoing dental surgical procedures.

Ann N Y Acad Sci,1975 , 240;263-6, Volume 240
By: Oscar N. Lucas, University of Oregon Dental School

Hypnotic blood flow control

Study 5: Hypnosis to Reduce Blood Loss in Maxillofacial (Neck, Head, Jaw, etc.) Surgery
Pre and perioperative suggestion in maxillofacial surgery: Effects on blood loss and recovery
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/7635580

Results: The patients who received hypnotic suggestions were compared to a group of matched control patients. The patients who received preoperative hypnotic suggestions exhibited a 30% reduction in blood loss. A 26% reduction in blood loss was shown in the group of patients receiving pre- and perioperative suggestions, and the group of patients receiving perioperative suggestions only showed a 9% reduction in blood loss.

Notes: The basic assumption underlying the present study was that emotional factors may influence not only recovery but also blood loss and blood pressure in maxillofacial surgery patients, where the surgery was performed under general anesthesia. Eighteen patients (group 1) were administered a hypnosis tape containing preoperative therapeutic suggestions, 18 patients (group 2) were administered hypnosis tapes containing pre- and perioperative (note “perioperative” generally means the time of hospitalization until discharge) suggestions, and 24 patients (group 3) were administered a hypnosis tape containing perioperative suggestions only. Groups 1 and 2 listened to the audiotape 1-2 times daily for the two weeks before surgery. The audiotapes provided therapeutic suggestions for improved healing, less bleeding, lower blood pressure, and faster recovery. The audiotape was 17 minutes in length. During surgery, group 2 also heard an audiotape, which contained similar positive therapeutic suggestions.

Int J Clin Exp Hypn. 1995 Jul;43(3):284-94
By: B. Enqvist, L. von Konow, H. Bystedt, Eastman Institute, Stockholm, Sweden

Hypnosis and Cancer


Cancer-patients-use-hypnosis-in-healing

There is a huge body of research into the use of hypnosis with cancer patientsAs with many types of complementary therapy, one of the main reasons people with cancer use hypnotherapy is to help them relax and cope better with symptoms and treatment. Hypnotherapy can help people to feel more comfortable and in control of their situation.

People with cancer most often use hypnotherapy for sickness or pain. There is some evidence that hypnotherapy helps with these symptoms. It can also help with depression, anxiety and stress.

Some doctors and dentists have training in hypnotherapy. They may use this alongside conventional treatments such as chemotherapy or radiotherapy.

Research into Hypnotherapy in People With Cancer
Some reports show that hypnosis can help people to reduce their blood pressure, stress, anxiety, and pain. Hypnosis can create relaxing brain wave patterns. Some clinical trials have looked at how well hypnotherapy works for people with cancer.

Research has looked at the following areas:

Hypnosis and Cancer Pain
A report from the American National Institute for Health in 1996 stated that hypnosis can help to reduce some kinds of cancer pain. A large review in 2006 looked at using hypnotherapy to control distress and pain from medical procedures in children with cancer. The review found that hypnotherapy did seem to help to reduce the children’s pain and distress, but it recommended more research. You can look at this cancer pain review on the Research Council for Complementary medicine website.

In 2012, researchers in Spain again reviewed studies of children with cancer and found that hypnosis appeared to help reduce pain and distress from cancer or from medical procedures.

Hypnosis and Sickness
A large review in 2006 looked at research into hypnotherapy for feeling or being sick from chemotherapy. Most of the studies in this area have been in children. Overall, the studies did show that hypnotherapy might be able to help with chemotherapy sickness in children. There has only been 1 study looking at hypnotherapy for sickness after chemotherapy in adults, so we need more research into this. You can look at this cancer and sickness review on the Research Council for Complementary medicine website.

One study found that hypnosis can help to reduce anticipatory nausea and vomiting. Anticipatory nausea or vomiting happens when people have had nausea or vomiting due to cancer drugs and they then have nausea or vomiting just before their next dose.

Hypnosis and Hot Flushes
A clinical trial in America in 2008 found that women having breast cancer treatment who had hypnosis had fewer hot flushes and the flushes were less severe. The women also had less anxiety, depression, and interference with daily activities, and better sleep.

Hypnosis and Breast Cancer Surgery
A study in 2007 in America gave hypnotherapy to a group of women before breast surgery. The researchers found that hypnotherapy lowered the amount of pain, sickness, tiredness and upset that the women had after surgery. Another American study in 2006 found that hypnotherapy helped to lower anxiety and pain during a biopsy for suspected breast cancer.

Hypnotherapy for Symptom Control in Advanced Cancer
In 2005 researchers carried out a review of studies into hypnotherapy for treating symptoms in people with advanced cancer. There were 27 studies but all were small or of poor quality. So it is not possible to tell whether hypnotherapy can help people with advanced cancer. We need research to find this out and this research below goes a long way in helping medical science discover ways to treat and alleviate the symptoms of cancer.

 

Study 1: Cancer and Hypnosis – 2013 Overview

Hypnosis for cancer care: Over 200 years young
http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.3322/caac.21165/full

Notes: Hypnosis has been used to provide psychological and physical comfort to individuals diagnosed with cancer for nearly 200 years. The goals of this review are:

1) to describe hypnosis and its components and to dispel misconceptions

2) to provide an overview of hypnosis as a cancer prevention and control technique (covering its use in weight management, smoking cessation, as an adjunct to diagnostic and treatment procedures, survivorship, and metastatic disease)

3) to discuss future research directions. Overall, the literature supports the benefits of hypnosis for improving quality of life during the course of cancer and its treatment.

CA: A Cancer Journal for Clinicians, Volume 63, Issue 1, pages 31-44, January/February 2013
By: Guy H. Montgomery Ph.D., Director, Integrative Behavioral Medicine Program, Associate Professor, Department of Oncological Sciences, Mount Sinai School of Medicine, New York, NY

Julie B. Schnur Ph.D., Co-Director, Integrative Behavioral Medicine Program, Assistant Professor, Department of Oncological Sciences, Mount Sinai School of Medicine, New York, NY

Kate Kravits MA, RN, HNB-BC, LPC, NCC, ATR-BC, Senior Research Specialist, Division of Nursing Research and Education, Department of Population Sciences, City of Hope, Duarte, CA

Study 2: Hypnosis for Cancer: Another Overview and Suggestions for Future Use and Research Hypnosis in Cancer Care.
http://bscw.rediris.es/pub/bscw.cgi/d4501369/Liossi-Hypnosis_cancer_care.pdf

Notes: Despite conclusive evidence for the efficacy of clinical hypnosis in the management of many cancer related symptoms and particularly acute and chronic pain, hypnosis is currently under-utilized in these applications. This paper gives a brief overview of the contemporary uses of hypnosis in pediatric and adult oncology and shows how hypnosis can be integrated into a total therapeutic process based on the needs and goals of the patient and the health care team treating them. The first section describes studies that have evaluated hypnosis in adult oncology. The second half consists of a review of the hypnosis literature in pediatric oncology. The paper concludes with suggestions for future research, and implications for clinical practice.

Contemp. Hypnosis 23(1): 47-57 (2006)
By: Christina Liossi, University of Southampton, UK

Study 3: Self-Hypnosis for Pain and Anxiety During Biopsy Outpatient Procedures
Adjunctive self-hypnotic relaxation for outpatient medical procedures: A prospective randomized trial with women undergoing large core breast biopsy
http://www.painjournalonline.com/article/S0304-3959(06)00393-9/abstract

Results: Women’s anxiety increased significantly in the standard group (logit slope=0.18, p<0.001), did not change in the empathy group (slope=-0.04, p=0.45), and decreased significantly in the hypnosis group (slope=-0.27, p<0.001). Pain increased significantly in all three groups (logit slopes: standard care=0.53, empathy=0.37, hypnosis=0.34; all p<0.001) though less steeply with hypnosis and empathy than standard care (p=0.024 and p=0.018, respectively). Room time and cost were not significantly different in an univariate ANOVA despite hypnosis and empathy requiring an additional professional: 46min/$161 for standard care, 43min/$163 for empathy, and 39min/$152 for hypnosis. We conclude that, while both structured empathy and hypnosis decrease procedural pain and anxiety, hypnosis provides more powerful anxiety relief without undue cost and thus appears attractive for outpatient pain management.

Notes: Medical procedures in outpatient settings have limited options of managing pain and anxiety pharmacologically. We therefore assessed whether this can be achieved by adjunct self-hypnotic relaxation in a common and particularly anxiety provoking procedure. Two hundred and thirty-six women referred for large core needle breast biopsy to an urban tertiary university-affiliated medical center were prospectively randomized to receive standard care (n=76), structured empathic attention (n=82), or self-hypnotic relaxation (n=78) during their procedures. Patients’ self-ratings at 10min-intervals of pain and anxiety on 0-10 verbal analog scales with 0=no pain/anxiety at all, 10=worst pain/anxiety possible, were compared in an ordinal logistic regression model.

PAIN, Volume 126, Issue 1, Pages 155-164, 15 December 2006
By: Elvira V. Lang, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center/Harvard Medical School, Department of Radiology
Kevin S. Berbaum, Salomao Faintuch, Olga Hatsiopoulou, Noami Halsey, Xinyu Li, Michael L. Berbaum, Eleanor Laser, Janet Baum

Study 4: Pre-Surgery Hypnosis for Breast Biopsies – Post-Surgery Pain and Anxiety
Brief presurgery hypnosis reduces distress and pain in excisional breast biopsy patients
http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/00207140208410088#preview

Results: Hypnosis reduced postsurgery pain and distress.

Notes: Each year, hundreds of thousands of women undergo excisional breast biopsies for definitive diagnosis. Not only do these patients experience pain associated with the procedure, but they also endure distress associated with the threat of cancer. To determine the impact of brief presurgical hypnosis on these patients’ postsurgery pain and distress and to explore possible mediating mechanisms of these effects, 20 excisional breast biopsy patients were randomly assigned to a hypnosis or control group (standard care).

Hypnosis reduced postsurgery pain and distress.
International Journal of Clinical and Experimental Hypnosis, Volume 50, Issue 1, 2002, pages 17-32
By: Guy H. Montgomerya, Christina R. Weltza, Megan Seltza, Dana H. Bovbjerga, Mount Sinai School of Medicine, New York

Study 5: Hypnosis to Reduce Presurgical Distress Regarding Breast Biopsies
Hypnosis decreases presurgical distress in excisional breast biopsy patients.
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18227298

Results: Post intervention, and before surgery, patients in the hypnosis group had significantly lower mean values for presurgery VAS emotional upset (16.5 vs 38.2, P < 0.0001, d = .85), VAS depressed mood (6.6 vs 19.9, P < 0.02, d = .67), and SV-POMS anxiety (10.0 vs 5.0, P < 0.0001, d = 0.85); and significantly higher levels for VAS relaxation (75.7 vs 54.2, P < 0.001, d = -0.76) than attention controls. The study results indicate that a brief presurgery hypnosis intervention can be an effective means of controlling presurgical distress in women awaiting diagnostic breast cancer surgery.

Notes: Excisional breast biopsy is associated with presurgical psychological distress. Such distress is emotionally taxing, and may have negative implications for postsurgical side effects and satisfaction with anesthesia. We investigated the ability of a brief hypnosis session to reduce presurgical psychological distress in excisional breast biopsy patients. Ninety patients presenting for excisional breast biopsy were randomly assigned to receive either a 15-minute presurgery hypnosis session (n = 49, mean age: 46.4 (95% CI: 42.3-50.4)) or a 15-minute presurgery attention control session (n = 41, mean age: 45.0 (95% CI: 40.8-49.2)). The hypnosis session involved suggestions for increased relaxation and decreased distress. The attention control session involved nondirective empathic listening. Presurgery distress was measured using visual analog scales (VAS) and the short version of the Profile of Mood States (SV-POMS). Data were analyzed using analysis of variance and chi2 procedures.

Anesth Analg. 2008 Feb;106(2):440-4
By: J. B. Schnur, D. H. Bovbjerg, D. David, K. Tatrow, A. B. Goldfarb, J. H. Silverstein, C. R. Weltz, G. H. Montgomery, Department of Oncological Sciences, Box 1130, Mount Sinai School of Medicine, 1 Gustave L. Levy Place, New York City, NY 10029-6574, USA

Study 6: Hypnosis to Alleviate Anxiety Related to Bone Marrow Aspirates and Biopsies
A Randomized Trial of Hypnosis for Relief of Pain and Anxiety in Adult Cancer Patients Undergoing Bone Marrow Procedures
http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/07347332.2012.664261#preview

Results: The hypnosis intervention reduced the anxiety associated with this procedure, but the difference in pain scores between the two groups was not statistically significant. The authors conclude that brief hypnosis concurrently administered reduces patient anxiety during bone marrow aspirates and biopsies but may not adequately control pain.

Notes: Pain and anxiety are closely associated with bone marrow aspirates and biopsies. To determine whether hypnosis administered concurrently with the procedure can ameliorate these morbidities, the authors randomly assigned 80 cancer patients undergoing bone marrow aspirates and biopsies to either hypnosis or standard of care.

Journal of Psychosocial Oncology, Volume 30, Issue 3, 2012, pages 281-293
By: Alison Snow LCSW-Ra, David Dorfman PhDb, Rachel Warbet LCSWa, Meredith Cammarata LCSWa, Stephanie Eisenman LCSWa, Felice Zilberfein PhDa, Luis Isola MDc & Shyamala Navada MDc

Author Affiliations:
a:  Department of Social Work Services, Mount Sinai Medical Center, New York, NY, USA
b:  Department of Psychiatry, Mount Sinai School of Medicine, New York, NY, USA
c:  Tisch Cancer Institute, Mount Sinai School of Medicine, New York, NY, USA)

Study 7: Hypnosis Versus Analgesic Cream (Local Anesthetic) to Relieve Lumbar Puncture Induced Pain and Anxiety in Cancer Patients Aged 6 to 16
Randomized clinical trial of local anesthetic versus a combination of local anesthetic with self-hypnosis in the management of pediatric procedure-related pain.
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16719602

Results: Confirmed that patients in the local anesthetic plus hypnosis group reported less anticipatory anxiety and less procedure-related pain and anxiety and that they were rated as demonstrating less behavioral distress during the procedure. The level of hypnotizability was significantly associated with the magnitude of treatment benefit, and this benefit was maintained when patients used hypnosis independently.

Notes: A prospective controlled trial was conducted to compare the efficacy of an analgesic cream (eutectic mixture of local anesthetics, or EMLA) with a combination of EMLA with hypnosis in the relief of lumbar puncture-induced pain and anxiety in 45 pediatric cancer patients (age 6-16 years). The study also explored whether young patients can be taught and can use hypnosis independently as well as whether the therapeutic benefit depends on hypnotizability. Patients were randomized to 1 of 3 groups: local anesthetic, local anesthetic plus hypnosis, and local anesthetic plus attention.

Health Psychol. 2006 May;25(3):307-15
By: C. Liossi, P. White, P. Hatira, School of Psychology, University of Southampton, Southampton, United Kingdom

Study 8: Hypnosis for Colonoscopies: Anxiety and Pain (as well as decreasing Colonoscopy Recovery Time)
Hypnosis to Manage Anxiety and Pain Associated with Colonoscopy for Colorectal Cancer Screening: Case Studies and Possible Benefits
http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/00207140600856780#preview

Results: Results suggest that hypnosis appears to be a feasible method to manage anxiety and pain associated with colonoscopy, reduces the need for sedation, and may have other benefits such as reduced vasovagal events and recovery time.

Notes: This study explored using hypnosis for pain and anxiety management in 6 colonoscopy patients (5 men, 1 woman), who received a hypnotic induction and instruction in self-hypnosis on the day of their colonoscopy. Patients’ levels of anxiety were obtained before and after the hypnotic induction using Visual Analogue Scales (VAS). Following colonoscopy, VASs were used to assess anxiety and pain during colonoscopy, perceived effectiveness of hypnosis, and patient satisfaction with medical care. Hypnotizability was assessed at a separate appointment. The authors also obtained data (time for procedure, number of vasovagal events, and recovery time) for 10 consecutive patients who received standard care.

International Journal of Clinical and Experimental Hypnosis, Volume 54, Issue 4, 2006.
By: Gary Elkins, Joseph White, Parita Patel, Joel Marcus, Michelle M. Perfect und Guy H. Montgomery

Author Affiliations:
a:  Baylor University, Waco, Texas, USA
b:  Scott and White Memorial Hospital, Temple, Texas, USA
c:  Texas A & M University College of Medicine, College Station, Texas, USA
d:  Mount Sinai School of Medicine, New York, New York, USA)

Study 9: Hypnosis for Biopsy or Lumpectomy for Breast Cancer – Effect on Amount of Analgesics/Sedatives Required, Pain, Nausea, Fatigue, Discomfort, and Upset (as well as Reduced Surgical Time)
A Randomized Clinical Trial of a Brief Hypnosis Intervention to Control Side Effects in Breast Surgery Patients
http://jnci.oxfordjournals.org/content/99/17/1304.full.pdf+html

Results: Patients in the hypnosis group required less propofol (means = 64.01 versus 96.64 µg; difference = 32.63; 95% confidence interval [CI] = 3.95 to 61.30) and lidocaine (means = 24.23 versus 31.09 mL; difference = 6.86; 95% CI = 3.05 to 10.68) than patients in the control group. Patients in the hypnosis group also reported less pain intensity (means = 22.43 versus 47.83; difference = 25.40; 95% CI = 17.56 to 33.25), pain unpleasantness (means = 21.19 versus 39.05; difference = 17.86; 95% CI = 9.92 to 25.80), nausea (means = 6.57 versus 25.49; difference = 18.92; 95% CI = 12.98 to 24.87), fatigue (means = 29.47 versus 54.20; difference = 24.73; 95% CI = 16.64 to 32.83), discomfort (means = 23.01 versus 43.20; difference = 20.19; 95% CI = 12.36 to 28.02), and emotional upset (means = 8.67 versus 33.46; difference = 24.79; 95% CI = 18.56 to 31.03). Institutional costs for surgical breast cancer procedures were $8561 per patient at Mount Sinai School of Medicine. Patients in the hypnosis group cost the institution $772.71 less per patient than those in the control group (95% CI = 75.10 to 1469.89), mainly due to reduced surgical time.
Conclusions: Hypnosis was superior to attention control regarding propofol and lidocaine use; pain, nausea, fatigue, discomfort, and emotional upset at discharge; and institutional cost. Overall, the present data support the use of hypnosis with breast cancer surgery patients.

Notes: Breast cancer surgery is associated with side effects, including postsurgical pain, nausea, and fatigue. We carried out a randomized clinical trial to test the hypotheses that a brief presurgery hypnosis intervention would decrease intraoperative anesthesia and analgesic use and side effects associated with breast cancer surgery and that it would be cost effective. We randomly assigned 200 patients who were scheduled to undergo excisional breast biopsy or lumpectomy (mean age 48.5 years) to a 15-minute presurgery hypnosis session conducted by a psychologist or nondirective empathic listening (attention control).. Intraoperative anesthesia use (i.e., of the analgesics lidocaine and fentanyl and the sedatives propofol and midazolam) was assessed. Patient-reported pain and other side effects as measured on a visual analog scale (0-100) were assessed at discharge, as was use of analgesics in the recovery room. Institutional costs and time in the operating room were assessed via chart review.

JNCI J Natl Cancer Inst Volume 99, Issue 17Pp. 1304-1312
By: Guy H. Montgomery, Dana H. Bovbjerg, Julie B. Schnur, Daniel David, Alisan Goldfarb, Christina R. Weltz, Clyde Schechter, Joshua Graff-Zivin, Kristin Tatrow, Donald D. Price and Jeffrey H. Silverstein

Author Affiliations:

  1. Department of Oncological Sciences (GHM, DHB, JBS)
  2. Department of Surgery (AG, CRW), and Department of Anesthesiology Sciences (JHS), Mount Sinai School of Medicine, New York, NY
  3. Department of Clinical Psychology and Psychotherapy, Babes-Bolyai University, Cluj-Napoca, Romania (DD)
  4. Department of Family and Social Medicine, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, NY (CS)
  5. Department of Health Policy and Management, Columbia University, New York, NY (JGZ)
  6. Department of Psychology, Good Shepherd Rehabilitation Hospital, Allentown, PA (KT)
  7. Departments of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery and Neuroscience, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL (DDP)

Study 10: Self-Hypnosis for Percutaneous Tumor Treatment – Pain and Anxiety
Beneficial Effects of Hypnosis and Adverse Effects of Empathic Attention during Percutaneous Tumor Treatment: When Being Nice Does Not Suffice
http://www.jvir.org/article/S1051-0443(08)00180-2/abstract

Results: Patients treated with hypnosis experienced significantly less pain and anxiety than those in the standard care and empathy groups at several time intervals and received significantly fewer median drug units (mean, 2.0; interquartile range [IQR], 1-4) than patients in the standard (mean, 3.0; IQR, 1.5-5.0; P = .0147) and empathy groups (mean, 3.50; IQR, 2.0-5.9; P = .0026). Thirty-one of 65 patients (48%) in the empathy group had adverse events, which was significantly more than in the hypnosis group (eight of 66; 12%; P = .0001) and standard care group (18 of 70; 26%; P = .0118).

Notes: For their tumor embolization or radiofrequency ablation, 201 patients were randomized to receive standard care, empathic attention with defined behaviors displayed by an additional provider, or self-hypnotic relaxation including the defined empathic attention behaviors. All had local anesthesia and access to intravenous medication. Main outcome measures were pain and anxiety assessed every 15 minutes by patient self-report, medication use (with 50 µg fentanyl or 1 mg midazolam counted as one unit), and adverse events, defined as occurrences requiring extra medical attention, including systolic blood pressure fluctuations (=50 mm Hg change to >180 mm Hg or <105 mm Hg), vasovagal episodes, cardiac events, and respiratory impairment.

Journal of Vascular and Interventional Radiology, Volume 19, Issue 6, Pages 897-905, June 2008
Elvira V. Lang, MD, Kevin S. Berbaum, PhD, Stephen G. Pauker, MD, Salomao Faintuch, MD, Gloria M. Salazar, MD, Susan Lutgendorf, PhD, Eleanor Laser, PhD, Henrietta Logan, PhD, David Spiegel, MD (Department of Radiology, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center/Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts 02215, USA

Study 11: Hypnosis for Venipuncture for Blood Sampling of Cancer Patients Aged 6 to 16 – Pain, Anxiety (and also Anxiety of Parents)
A randomized clinical trial of a brief hypnosis intervention to control venipuncture-related pain of pediatric cancer patients
http://www.painjournalonline.com/article/S0304-3959(09)00046-3/abstract

Results: Confirmed that patients in the local anesthetic plus hypnosis group reported less anticipatory anxiety, and less procedure-related pain and anxiety, and were rated as demonstrating less behavioral distress during the procedure than patients in the other two groups. Parents whose children were randomized to the local anesthetic plus hypnosis condition experienced less anxiety during their child’s procedure than parents whose children had been randomized to the other two conditions. The therapeutic benefit of the brief hypnotic intervention was maintained in the follow-up.

Notes: Venipuncture for blood sampling can be a distressing experience for a considerable number of children. A prospective controlled trial was conducted to compare the efficacy of a local anesthetic (EMLA) with a combination of EMLA with self-hypnosis in the relief of venipuncture-induced pain and anxiety in 45 pediatric cancer outpatients (age 6-16years). A secondary aim of the trial was to test whether the intervention will have a beneficial effect on parents’ anxiety levels during their child’s procedure. Patients were randomized to one of three groups: local anesthetic, local anesthetic plus hypnosis, and local anesthetic plus attention.

PAIN, Volume 142, Issue 3, Pages 255-263, April 2009
By: Christina Liossi, Paul White, Popi Hatira, School of Psychology, University of Southampton, Highfield, Southampton S017 1BJ, UK

Study 12: Hypnosis for Chemotherapy Related Nausea and Vomiting
Hypnosis for nausea and vomiting in cancer chemotherapy: a systematic review of the research evidence
http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.1365-2354.2006.00736.x/abstract

Results: Studies report positive results including statistically significant reductions in anticipatory and “cancer chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting” (“CINV”). Meta-analysis revealed a large effect size of hypnotic treatment when compared with treatment as usual, and the effect was at least as large as that of cognitive-behavioral therapy. Meta-analysis has demonstrated that hypnosis could be a clinically valuable intervention for anticipatory and CINV in children with cancer.

Notes: To systematically review the research evidence on the effectiveness of hypnosis for cancer chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting (CINV). A comprehensive search of major biomedical databases including MEDLINE, EMBASE, ClNAHL, PsycINFO and the Cochrane Library was conducted. Specialist complementary and alternative medicine databases were searched and efforts were made to identify unpublished and ongoing research. Citations were included from the databases’ inception to March 2005. Randomized controlled trials (RCTs) were appraised and meta-analysis undertaken. Clinical commentaries were obtained. Six RCTs evaluating the effectiveness of hypnosis in CINV were found. In five of these studies the participants were children.

European Journal of Cancer Care, Volume 16, Issue 5, pages 402-412, September 2007
By: J. RICHARDSON bsc(hons), phd, rn, cpsychol, pgce, rnt, reader in nursing and health studies1,*, J.E. SMITH ba(hons), msc, former research assistant2, G. MCCALL dcr(t), msc, applied hypnosis, senior research radiographer & psychological support3, A. RICHARDSON bn(hons), msc, phd, rn, pgdiped, rnt, professor of cancer and palliative nursing care4, K. PILKINGTON bpharm(hons), dipinfsci, msc, pcme, mrpharms5, I. KIRSCH ba , ma , phd , professor of psychology 6

Author Information:

  1. Faculty of Health and Social Work, Portland Square, University of Plymouth, Drake Circus, Plymouth, Devon
  2. NHSP/CAMEO project, Research Council for Complementary Medicine, South-East London Cancer Centre, St Thomas’ Hospital, London
  3. The Florence Nightingale School of Nursing and Midwifery, King’s College London, Franklin Wilkins Building, London
  4. Project Manager/Senior Research Fellow, School of Integrated Health and Research Council for Complementary Medicine, University of Westminster, 115 New Cavendish Street, London
  5. School of Applied Psychosocial Studies, Portland Square, University of Plymouth, Drake Circus, Plymouth, Devon, UK

Study 13: Hypnosis and Survivorship (Life with Cancer Post Treatment) – Hot Flashes in Breast Cancer Survivors
Randomized Trial of a Hypnosis Intervention for Treatment of Hot Flashes Among Breast Cancer Survivors
http://jco.ascopubs.org/content/26/31/5022

Results: Fifty-one randomly assigned women completed the study. By the end of the treatment period, hot flash scores (frequency × average severity) decreased 68% from baseline to end point in the hypnosis arm (P < .001). Significant improvements in self-reported anxiety, depression, interference of hot flashes on daily activities, and sleep were observed for patients who received the hypnosis intervention (P < .005) in comparison to the no treatment control group.
Conclusion: Hypnosis appears to reduce perceived hot flashes in breast cancer survivors and may have additional benefits such as reduced anxiety and depression, and improved sleep.

Notes: Hot flashes are a significant problem for many breast cancer survivors. Hot flashes can cause discomfort, disrupted sleep, anxiety, and decreased quality of life. A well-tolerated and effective mind-body treatment for hot flashes would be of great value. On the basis of previous case studies, this study was developed to evaluate the effect of a hypnosis intervention for hot flashes. Sixty female breast cancer survivors with hot flashes were randomly assigned to receive hypnosis intervention (five weekly sessions) or no treatment. Eligible patients had to have a history of primary breast cancer without evidence of detectable disease and 14 or more weekly hot flashes for at least 1 month. The major outcome measure was a bivariate construct that represented hot flash frequency and hot flash score, which was analyzed by a classic sums and differences comparison. Secondary outcome measures were self-reports of interference of hot flashes on daily activities.

Journal of Clinical Oncology, JCO November 1, 2008 vol. 26 no. 31 5022-5026
By: Gary Elkins, Joel Marcus, Vered Stearns, Michelle Perfect, M. Hasan Rajab, Christopher Ruud, Lynne Palamara and Timothy Keith

Author Affiliations:

  1. From the Department of Psychology and Neuroscience, Baylor University, Waco
  2. Scott and White Memorial Hospital and Clinic, Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Temple
  3. Cancer Treatment and Research Center, San Antonio; and University of Texas at Austin, TX; University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ
  4. Department of Oncology, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, MD

Study 14: Use of Hypnosis for Terminally Ill Hospice Cancer Patients – Insomnia, Itchiness, Bowel Issues, Pain, Chemotherapy Side Effects, Relaxation (and also suggests best time for Cancer Patients to start Hypnotherapy is right at time of diagnosis.)
Efficacy of Hypnotherapy as a supplement therapy in Cancer Intervention
http://bscw.rediris.es/pub/bscw.cgi/d4431493/Peynovska-Efficacy_hypnotherapy_supplement_therapy_cancer

Results: Of the 20 patients who completed the three sessions of hypnotherapy all reported varying degrees of anxiety. 5 patients wanted to have hypnotherapy for insomnia as a primary presenting complain, 1 for excessive itchiness during night time, 1 for excessively frequent bowel actions – 8 to 10 times a day for the last year, which invariably interfered with his social life and prevented him from going out, 8 wanted to have hypnotherapy for pain control, 3 patients opted for hypnotherapy to prevent the side effects of chemotherapy and 2 patients had it specifically for severe anxiety and panic attacks.
The 5 patients who had hypnotherapy for insomnia all reported improved sleeping patterns even after the first session. After the third session none of them complained of insomnia and this result was sustained till the followup, which was 3 to 4 months after the first session. They also reported increased energy levels, less tiredness and improved appetite. 2 of the patients with insomnia have been on Temazepam 10mg before bed, which they voluntarily stopped taking after the first session.

The patient with nighttime itchiness reported that their itchiness stopped after the first session and she continued with the remaining two hypnotherapy sessions working towards pain control.

The patient with frequent bowel action reported that he managed to half the number of times he went to the toilet after the second session.
Of the 8 patients who had hypnotherapy for pain control, all reported that the intensity of pain has significantly been reduced and as a result they have reduced heir dose of opiate analgesics taken daily.

The 3 patients, who took part in the study to prevent the side effects of chemotherapy, also reported very good results with no nausea, sickness and less loss of energy, which was in contrast with their previous experience with chemotherapy.

Most of the patients (19 out of 20) reported that after the first two hypnotherapy sessions they were able to relax for the first time in a very long period, felt less tired and more energetic, had more refreshing night sleep and as a result were able to cope better with their daily activities.

It appears that the best time for hypnotherapy to be offered to cancer patients is right at the time of diagnosis. In that way, patients will be able to develop better coping skills much earlier in the disease process, which will help them to possibly prevent severe anxiety, depression and panic attacks from developing. They will have better treatment compliance and generally will have a more positive psychological response to their illness, which has been suggested as a good prognostic factor with an influence on survival.

Notes: All the patients who took part in the trial were day hospice patients of Ann Delhom Centre, Wisdom Hospice, Rochester, UK. Patients were offered three hypnotherapy sessions and were assessed before the first session and after the third one together with a follow up after 3/4 months after the last session. On the first session all the patients were taught ”progressive muscle relaxation” and self- hypnosis. Short ego boosting was also incorporated at the end of the session. The second and third sessions were different for every patient depending on the expressed symptoms and because of that were always individually tailored. Most of the sessions included guided imagery and direct therapeutic suggestions.

2 European Journal of Clinical Hypnosis: 2005 Volume 6 – Issue 1
By: Dr Rumi Peynovska, Dr Jackie Fisher, Dr David Oliver, Prof V.M. MathewStone House Hospital, Dartford, West Kent NHS and Social Care Trust, Wisdom Hospice, Rochester, Medway NHS Trust
Dr Rumi Peynovska MD, MSc, FBAMH – Research Fellow, Stone House Hospital, Dartford, West Kent NHS Trust
Dr Jackie Fisher BSc, MRCGP – Consultant in Palliative Medicine, Wisdom Hospice, Rochester, Medway NHS Trust
Dr David Oliver BSc, FRCGP – Consultant and Medical Director, Wisdom Hospice, Rochester, Medway NHS Trust
Prof. V.M. Mathew MBBS, MPhil, MRCPsych – Clinical Director, Stone House Hospital, Dartford, West Kent NHS Trust

Hypnosis and Asthma


I hope that this review is useful for those in the medical profession that have not considered Hypnosis as a form of treatment for asthmatic patients as yet. It can be highly effective for some patients and the self hypnosis skills learned can be used to manage their emotional state in many other areas of their lives also.

As always I look forward to your feedback, comments, thoughts and opinions.

Asthma Full

Study 1: Hypnosis Superior to Breathing Exercises for Improving Asthma
Hypnosis for Asthma – A Controlled Trial
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1912142/pdf/brmedj02105-0025.pdf

Results: Results were judged by analyses based on the daily “score” of wheezing recorded in patients’ diaries, by the number of times bronchodilators were used, and by independent clinical assessors. The hypnosis group had improved by 59% compared to a 43% improvement among those who had only been taught the breathing exercises. The average number of times a bronchodilator was used diminished more in the hypnosis group than the control group.

Notes: Two hundred and fifty-two participants aged 10 to 60 (with paroxysmal attacks of wheezing or tight chest capable of relief by bronchodilators) were broken into two groups. One hundred and twenty-seven were given monthly hypnosis sessions for a year and taught to practice self-hypnosis every day and 125 (the control group) were taught a series of breathing exercises designed to bring on deep relaxation. When they were independently assessed at the end of the trial there was a statistically significant difference between the two groups. For the hypnosis group, an eye-thumb fixation induction was used. Suggestions were then given that, by daily self-hypnosis, a state of easing of tension would occur, and – as a result – breathing would become and remain free.

Br Med J 1968;4:71-76 (12 October), A Report to the Research Committee of the British Tuberculosis Association
By: Those participating in the field-work were Drs. Crocket, Davies, Kalnowski, MacDonald, Maher-Loughnan, McAllen, Morrison Smith, Bria Shaw, and Stewart. The investigation was coordinated by Dr. G. P. Maher-Loughnan at Colindale Hospital, London.

Study 2: Review of Studies Concludes that Hypnosis Helps Asthma Generally and Especially in Children
Hypnosis and Asthma: Critical Review
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/10724294

Results: This report concluded that studies conducted to date have consistently demonstrated an effect of hypnosis with asthma. Existing data suggest that hypnosis efficacy is enhanced in subjects who are susceptible to the treatment modality (hypnosis), with experienced investigators, when administered over several sessions, and when reinforced by patient self-hypnosis. Children in particular appear to respond well to hypnosis as a tool for improving asthma symptoms.

Notes: This report analyzed numerous studies that were conducted on the effect of hypnosis on asthmatic patients.
Journal of Asthma, Volume 37, Issue 1 February 2000, pages 1-15
By: R. M. Hackman, J. S. Stern, M. E. Gershwin, University of California

Study 3: Review of Studies – Hypnosis Can Help Asthma Symptoms and Helps Manage Emotional States the Exacerbate Airway ObstructionEvidence-Based Hypnotherapy for Asthma: A Critical Review
http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/00207140601177947?journalCode=nhyp20

Results: This review concludes that hypnosis is possibly efficacious for treatment of asthma symptom severity and illness-related behaviors and is efficacious for managing emotional states that exacerbate airway obstruction. Hypnosis is also possibly efficacious for decreasing airway obstruction and stabilizing airway hyper-responsiveness in some individuals.

Notes: This paper reviewed evidence primarily from controlled outcome studies on hypnosis for asthma.

International Journal of Clinical and Experimental Hypnosis 2007 April.55(2)220-49
By: Daniel Brown, Ph.D., Harvard Medical School

Study 4: Hypnosis Reduces Asthmatics’ Hospital Stays, Drug Side Effects and Need for Drugs; also Improves Condition Generally
Chronic Asthma and Improvement with Relaxation Induced by Hypnotherapy
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1291881/pdf/jrsocmed00155-0023.pdf

Results: Sixteen chronic asthmatic patients inadequately controlled by drugs had, after one year of hypnotherapy, a drop – as a group – in hospital admissions from 44 in the year before starting hypnotherapy to 13 in the year after. Duration of hospital stay was reduced for 13 of the patients by hundreds of days; prednisolone was able to be withdrawn in 6 patients, reduced in 8 patients and increased in none. Adverse side effects of drugs were reduced. 62% of the patients reported improvement in their condition.

Notes: This study followed 16 asthmatics whose condition was not properly controlled by drugs. They were given hypnosis sessions at Southport General Infirmary in England. Instruction in self-hypnosis was given to induce relaxation daily for 5 to 15 minutes; if this was difficult for the participant, a tape recording was made to induce hypnosis. The asthmatics were told to use self-hypnosis/hypnosis at times of mild to moderate wheezing either alone or after use of an inhaler – but never in the event of a severe asthmatic attack.

J R Soc Med. 1988 Dec; 81(12) 701-4
By: J. B. Morrison, MD BSc Southport General Infirmary, Southport, Merseyside

Study 5: Hypnosis Helps Exercise-Induced Asthma
Hypnosis for Exercise-Induced Asthma
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/6803633

Results: Exercising after hypnosis resulted in only a 15.9% decrease in forced expiratory volume (FEV1 – volume of air that can be forced out taking a deep breath for one second, an important measure of pulmonary function) compared with a larger 31.8% decrease on the control days when hypnosis was not used prior to exercise (p less than 0.001). Pretreatment with cromolyn along with hypnosis resulted in a 7.6% decrease in FEV1. The study concludes that hypnosis can alter the magnitude of a pathophysiologic process, namely, the bronchospasm after exercise in patients with asthma.

Notes: This study assessed the efficacy of hypnosis in helping exercise-induced asthma (EIA) in 10 stable asthmatics. The subjects ran on a treadmill while mouth breathing for 6 min on 5 different days. Pulmonary mechanics were measured before and after each challenge. Two control exercise challenges resulted in a reproducible decrease in forced expiratory volume in one second (FEV1). On 2 other days, saline or cromolyn by nebulization was given in a double-blind manner with the suggestion that these agents would prevent EIA.

Am Rev Respir Dis. 1982 Apr;125(4):392-5
By: Z. Ben-Zvi, W. A. Spohn, S. H. Young, M. Kattan

Study 6: Hypnosis Can Help Mild to Moderate Asthma Symptoms
Improvement in Bronchial Hyper-Responsiveness in Patient with Moderate Asthma after Treatment with a Hypnotic Technique: A Randomised Controlled Trial
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1341848/

Results: The 12 participants with asthma who responded well to hypnosis improved their bronchial hyper-responsiveness (as measured by the methacholine challenge test) by 74.9%. In addition to this, symptoms improved by 41% and as a group they reduced their use of bronchodilators by 26%. In contrast the 17 patient who formed the control group and 10 who were not that hypnotizable had no change. This study concluded that hypnosis was a very effective technique for asthmatics who were moderately to highly hypnotizable. While this technique does not eliminate bronchial hyper-responsiveness, it does provide a clinically useful and nontoxic adjuvant to drug treatment that might benefit about half of the asthmatic population. In subjective terms, the perception of control over the degree of bronchospasm, accompanied by diminished anxiety, often results in an enhanced feeling of health and confidence.

Notes: 39 adults who had mild to moderate asthma were graded on their hypnotizability. 12 who were moderately to highly hypnotizable and 10 who were much less hypnotizable were then enrolled in a 6 week hypnotherapy program. The purpose of the inhaled bronchial challenge test using methacholine is to determine how responsive (or irritable) airways are and to determine the severity of any asthma; in the test, one inhales a mist that contains different concentrations of methacholine. The hypnotic technique used in this study started with an introductory discussion, which combined an outline of the treatment procedures, a general description of hypnosis, and a hypnotic induction. This was followed by suggestions of progressive relaxation, ego enhancement, and a method of self hypnosis. The remaining five sessions began with a similar but shortened induction, followed by a progression of guided imageries. By the final two sessions symptoms of asthma could be rapidly produced and immediately resolved under the subject’s own control. Although hypnotherapy is unlikely to have adverse effects, successful treatment might alter the patient’s appreciation of the severity of the airways obstruction, leading to a delay in seeking appropriate emergency treatment. In the treatment group, care was taken to minimize this possibility by suggestions given during hypnosis of increased awareness of symptoms of asthma, attention to the need for appropriate action, and the avoidance of symptom denial.

Br Med J (Clin Res Ed). 1986 Nov 1;293(6555): 1129-32
By: T. C. Ewer, D. E. Stewart, Dept. of Respiratory Medicine and Psychological Medicine, Princess Margaret Hospital, Christchurch, New Zealand

Study 7: Hypnosis Helps Children with Asthma
Hypnotherapy in the treatment of bronchial asthma
http://www.researchgate.net/publication/22018848_Hypnotherapy_in_the_treatment_of_bronchial_asthma

Results: The average improvement for all subjects using hypnosis was greater than 50% above the baseline measurement as documented by spirometry, monitored dyspnea, wheezing and subjective ratings by the subjects. It is suggested that hypnotherapy may be an important tool in ameliorating asthma, improving ventilatory capacity and promoting relaxation without recourse to pharmacologic agents. One explanation offered is that hypnosis affects an automic response, thereby diminishing bronchospasm.

Notes: The efficacy of hypnotherapy in aborting acute asthmatic attacks was studied in 17 children ranging in age from six to 17. All had as their primary diagnosis bronchial asthma. Prior to hypnotic induction pulmonary function was assessed, then monitored in the immediate post hypnotic period and at two intervals thereafter.

Annals of Allergy 07/1975; 34(6):356-62
By: G. M. Aronoff, S. Aronoff, L. W. Peck

Hypnosis and Arthritis


arthritis-affected areas osteoarthritis-knee

Arthritis is something known to most people, either through direct experience or knowing a family member or friend who suffers with it, and it can be highly debilitating through loss of mobility and function of joints as well as the pain involved.

My wife and me both have osteoarthritis so this was personally very interesting to read and research. As a result I am working on reducing my own pain and joint inflammation in order to improve the functioning of my hands (in particular both of my thumbs), knee and shoulder.

This paper was oriented to Rheumatoid Arthritis, however, pain and inflammation are constant across all forms of arthritis and my continued self application of hypnosis for this is relieving my pain symptoms and I have an improved mobility and functioning of my thumbs at present.

As always I welcome any comments and feedback from your personal experiences and any ways that you feel I may be able to help you.

Below is a link to a good presentation about arthritis:

https://www.emaze.com/@AIRILLOZ/Arthritis–tahliyah-joyner

Study 1: Hypnosis for Arthritis Symptoms
The effect of hypnosis therapy on the symptoms and disease activity in Rheumatoid Arthritis.
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22175264

Results: Results indicate that the hypnosis therapy produced more significant improvements in both the subjective and objective measurements, above relaxation and medication. Improvements were also found to be of clinical significance and became even more significant when patients practised the hypnosis regularly during the follow-up periods.

Notes: The present study aimed to assess the effectiveness of clinical hypnosis on the symptoms and disease activity of Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA). Sixty-six RA patients participated in a controlled group design. Twenty six patients learnt the hypnosis intervention, 20 patients were in a relaxation control group and 20 patients were in a waiting-list control group. During hypnosis, patients developed individual visual imagery aimed at reducing the autoimmune activity underlying the RA and at reducing the symptoms of joint pain, swelling and stiffness. Subjective assessments of symptom severity and body and joint function, using standardised questionnaires and visual analogue scales, were obtained. Objective measures of disease activity via multiple blood samples during the therapy period and at the two follow-ups were also taken. These measurements were of erythrocyte sedimentation rate. C-reactive protein, haemoglobin and leukocyte total numbers.

Psychol Health. 2000 Nov;14(6):1089-104
By: J. R. Horton-Hausknecht, U. Mitzdorf, D. Melchart, Institute of Medical Psychology, Ludwig-Maximilian-University, Goethestr, 31, 80336, Munich, Germany