Researchers from National University of Singapore conducted a randomized, four-arm design study with 100 veterans suffering from chronic lower back pain. The goal was to test the efficacy of hypnosis for alleviating lower back pain, as well as learn about the minimum dose required to produce meaningful benefits.
Additionally, the role of home practice was assessed as well as how well improvements were sustained beyond 3 months.
Researchers from the Department of Rehab Medicine at the University of Washington in Seattle evaluated the effects of a single session of four non-pharmacological pain interventions, relative to a sham procedure, on pain and electroencephalogram- (EEG-) assessed brain oscillation, in order to determine the extent to which intervention-related changes in perceived pain intensity are associated with changes in brain oscillations.
Thirty individuals with spinal cord injury and chronic pain were given an EEG and were tested for pain before and after five different procedures (hypnosis, meditation, transcranial direct current stimulation [tDCS], neurofeedback, and a control sham tDCS procedure).
Each procedure was associated with a different pattern of changes in brain activity, and all active procedures were significantly different from the control procedure in at least three bandwidths.
Researchers from the Sleep Disorders Center at the Mayo Clinic College in Rochester, MN replicated and extended an earlier study (by Hurwitz et al, 1991) looking at the effectiveness of one or two sessions of hypnosis in substantially improving “parasomnias” (sleep disorders such as sleepwalking, sleep-eating, nightmares, night terrors, bedwetting, sleep sex, teeth grinding, sleep talking, restless legs syndrome, and so on) up to five years later.
The study sample consisted of thirty-six patients (19 male, 17 female), ages ranging from 6 to 71, with an average age of 32.7 years. Four were children aged 6 to 16. All had chronic, self-sustaining parasomnias. All underwent 1 or 2 hypnotherapy sessions and were then followed with a questionnaire for 5 years.
Researchers from the Swiss Research Institute for Public Health and Addiction at the University of Zurich in Switzerland investigated the efficacy of a single-session of group hypnotherapy for smoking cessation, as compared to relaxation in a sample of 223 Swiss adult smokers.
This was a cluster-randomized, parallel-group, controlled trial. A single session of hypnosis or relaxation for smoking cessation was delivered to groups of smokers (median size = 11).
Participants were 223 smokers consuming at least 5 cigarettes per day, who were willing to quit and not using cessation aids (47.1% females, M = 37.5 years [SD = 11.8], 86.1% Swiss).
Nicotine withdrawal, smoking abstinence self-efficacy, and adverse reactions were assessed at a 2-week follow-up.
Researchers from the University of Gothenburg in Gothenburg, Sweden conducted a retrospective study to evaluate long-term effects 2-7 years after receiving gut-directed hypnotherapy for Irritable Bowel Syndrome.Subjects who had received gut-directed hypnotherapy (n=208) filled out the Subjective Assessment Questionnaire (SAQ) which measures changes in IBS symptoms. The 208 patients were classified as responders and non-responders were also asked to report changes in health-care seeking, use of drugs for IBS symptoms, use of alternative non-pharmacological treatments, and if they still actively used hypnotherapy.
Researchers from the Bakirköy Education and Training Hospital in Istanbul, Turkey,evaluated the efficacy of Ericksonian hypnosis n reducing the impact of tinnitus on patients' quality of life.
They designed a controlled prospective longitudinal study where the severity of tinnitus was assessed with the Tinnitus Handicap Inventory (THI) before hypnotherapy and then 1 week, 1 month, 3 months, and 6 months after therapy.
Health Survey SF-36 was used to assess health-related quality of life before and after hypnotherapy.
Since the sense of smell plays a prominent role in traumatic memories, investigators from the mental health division of the Israeli Defense Forces conducted an open, prospective study with patients suffering from chronic combat-related PTSD, whose condition had not improved with other treatment modalities, to see if the olfactory sense could be utilized for healing the symptoms of PTS.
A technique called hypnotherapeutic olfactory conditioning (HOC)1 was tested with 36 outpatient combat veterans with chronic PTS that featured resistant olfactory-induced flashbacks. They were treated with six 1.5-hour sessions using hypnosis.
Investigators from the Institute of Medical Psychology at Ludwig-Maximilians-University and Technical University in Munich, Germany, used a retrospective study to assess the effectiveness of a combined therapy of traditional Chinese medicine and hypnotherapy (systemic autoregulation therapy or SART) as a novel treatment for endometriosis-associated symptoms, especially for the 15% of patients with severe endometriosis who suffer from pain in spite of pharmacological and surgical treatment.
Forty-seven patients with severe endometriosis, treated with the SART protocol, were followed up through standardized telephone interviews. Follow-up data were compared to baseline assessments.
Researchers from the University of Greenwich, London, UK investigated whether hypnosis plus Virtual Reality (VR) performed more effectively than hypnosis alone.
Thirty-five healthy participants were randomized to self-hypnosis with VR imagery, standard self-hypnosis, or relaxation interventions. Changes in sleep, cortisol levels, and mood were measured.
Researchers from the Unidad de Investigació Médica in Merida, Mexico, explored the efficacy of Ericksonian Hypnosis for managing the symptoms of fibromyalgia.
Forty-three female fibromyalgia patients were randomly assigned to receive either six months of Ericksonian hypnosis (n = 20) or a sham-hypnosis protocol (n = 23). Each month, measures were taken using the Patient and Physician Global Disease Assessment, a count of tender points, and the Fibromyalgia Impact Questionnaire (FIQ).