New Hope through Hypnosis

   By drodriguez  Sep 14, 2008

With Breast Cancer Awareness Month this October came a new study that reveals some hopeful findings. The Journal of the National Cancer Institute recently published a study that links hypnosis to an improved breast cancer recovery period.

Researchers from Mount Sinai Medical Center in New York City recruited 200 women and randomly assigned them to one control group and one group to undergo hypnosis. Women in the hypnosis group received a short 15-minute hypnosis session with a psychologist right before surgery was to be performed. Women in the control group received a 15-minute emotional support session from the same psychologist prior to their surgery.

The findings are very interesting. Women in the hypnosis group required significantly less medication during surgery than the women in the control group. Though the amount of pain medication taken after the surgery was the same between the control and hypnosis group, the women in the hypnosis group reported less pain, nausea, fatigue, and emotional upset than the women in the control group.

The women in the hypnosis group also spent less time on the operating table and ended up costing on average $770 less than the patients in the control group. With these kinds of findings, you can be sure that there will be further tests to record long-term effects of hypnosis on breast cancer patients.

Sonia Jakowler, director of the National Cancer Institute’s Cancer Cell Biology Branch reacts to the study by saying, “If you can decrease the amount of pain using a technique such as hypnosis, and you can also at the same time reduce cost involved in treating these patients, I think it’s beneficial both ways.”

What do you think of the recent study linking hypnosis to an improved recovery period for breast cancer patients?

Do you think hospitals should consider having hypnosis sessions available to all breast cancer patients?

Make a Comment

erica_cal by erica_cal | Scotts Valley, CA
Nov 22, 2008

Neat article!

MaurChclt by MaurChclt | Cattaraugus, NY
Nov 09, 2008

Very interesting and certainly worth exploring. My daughter is having a baby in Feb. and planning on having hypnosis instead of having any drugs. I'm sure this would work.

thriftyrocks by thriftyrocks | LANSING, MI
Oct 24, 2008

I think that we need to start treating the person instead of the matter what afflicts us. I believe that a combo of well trained docs, the right meds and whatever alternative practices work for the individual are the way to go. I think a combo of regular and alternative works the best!

gettinrevvin by gettinrevvin | Shippensburg, PA
Aug 27, 2008

I think more attention should be paid to hypnosis, and other healing alternatives. I believe others have benefited from them, and our society puts more emphasis on pharmaceuticals, because they can make more money. I think insurance should cover these kinds of treatments, and I believe we would see healthier people than what we are currently.

bigmouth58 by bigmouth58 | Houston, TX
Aug 02, 2008

Hypnosis have been working for decades. We experienced it in our family forty years ago. My step father had surgery under hypnosis and it was a great success. I am talking about a small country in South America where I am from and it was performed 40 years ago!!! I think nobody wants to use it, because this would cut the astronomical cost of surgery at a lost to hospitals. Everything is about money nowadays.

GSMurph50 by GSMurph50 | Sanford, FL
Jul 27, 2008

I Think any alternative for pain relief other than narcotics is GOOD news . I haven't had CANCER , but I have other problems . My doctor started me on narcotic pain meds , and have been on them for over 4 years and now I am on so much it's rediculus . They don't even work any more , and now my body isdependent on them . With no pain relief ! after a while your opiate receptors no longer work . What I was taking another doctor asked me who put me on all the meds , and said that that doctor should be in jail . So you see narcotics are not the answer and I wish I had never ever took the first pill .

tishatoone by tishatoone | Topeka, KS
Jul 22, 2008

I think that hospitals and insurance carriers should offer all types of alternative cares. I know that you can pretty much get anything you want for $$$, but many times it will be out of your own pocket. I would be willing to try it for menopause!!

dizzyspell1313 by dizzyspell1313 | Brookline, MA
Jul 21, 2008

i think studies like this have the unfortunate side effect of adding to the "mind over matter" mystique surrounding illness recovery and disability. if women can be hypnotized into having a shorter recovery time, this sends a message implying that the pain of recovery can be overcome by sheer will and inner strength--ignoring the very real pain, fatigue and depression that many women go through, and can't will themselves out of.

GerberaDaisies by GerberaDaisies | Dayton, TX
Jun 20, 2008

I believe that the mind is a very powerful tool so, this doesn't surprise me. After all, our minds do control our body. We just need to learn how to utilize that strength. I think it's great that they are branching out and trying other options in addition to pharmaceuticals and, as an added bonus, are spending less money in the process.

sireeshasri by sireeshasri | arizona city, HI
May 26, 2008


newtest by newtest | lancaster, OH
Nov 07, 2007

If more people could understand that thier mind is more powerful than any rx,Prescription prices and dependency would dramaticaly decline.

sweetfox by sweetfox | Orem, UT
Nov 07, 2007

Yes I do! I think that the current finding are positive enough that it should be offered and available to all patients. If I am ever in this situation I would want to try it for sure.

sharman421 by sharman421 | TALLAHASSEE, FL
Nov 05, 2007

Anything that works to make that patient a survivor!

tammy by tammy | Tallahassee, FL
Nov 04, 2007

I think hospitals should offer every possible means to help the outcome of their patients. If hypnosis has been proven to work, and reduce their costs, there is no reason it should not be available.

cvarano by cvarano | BROOKLYN, NY
Nov 02, 2007

I agree. I think everyone has that inner strength and perhaps it's a bit more hidden in some. Hypnosis could probably help a lot of people. Your mental state is extremely important and connected to your physical state. We need to keep thinking positive.