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January 2007 - English PDF Print E-mail


The International Journal of Clinical and Experimental Hypnosis
Volume 55, Number 1 - January 2007 - English


Hypnotizability and Somatic Complaints: A Gender-Specific Phenomenon
Jarred W. Younger, Gina C. Rossetti, Jeffrey J. Borckardt, Arthur R. Smith, Anthony F. Tasso, and Michael R. Nash

Abstract: The relationship between hypnotizability and somatic illness was measured in 45 college students. Several weeks after completing the Waterloo-Stanford Group C Scale (WSGC), participants filled out a somatic-complaint checklist and measures of psychopathology. Results indicated a positive correlation between hypnotizability and somatic illness, and the relationship was stronger for female participants. In contrast to the quadratic model proposed by Wickramasekera, the current data demonstrated a linear relationship between hypnotizability and somatic complaint. Further analyses showed that somatic complaints were associated with hallucination and imagery items, corresponding to the perceptual-cognitive factor identified in Woody, Barnier, and McConkey’s factor analysis of the Stanford Hypnotic Susceptibility Scale, Form C. The results call into question some claims that high hypnotizability is an adaptive and healthy trait.


Hypnotizability, Eating Behaviors, Attitudes, and Concerns: A Literature Survey
Susan Hutchinson-Phillips, Kathryn Gow, and Graham Jamieson

Abstract: The literature suggests that aspects of hypnotizability may be involved in the etiology and maintenance of self-defeating eating. However, interpretation of the published research findings has been complicated by the use of instruments that appear to have measured different or, at best, only related facets of the underlying constructs. This article reports relationships between weight, shape, dietary concerns, hypnotizability, dissociative capacity, and fantasy proneness. Implications for a key role for hypnosis in the treatment of eating behaviors, attitudes, and concerns are discussed.


Effectiveness of Hypnosis in Reducing Mild Essential Hypertension: A 1-Year Follow-up
Marie-Claire Gay

Abstract: The present study investigates the effectiveness of hypnosis in reducing mild essential hypertension. Thirty participants were randomly assigned to hypnosis (standardized, individual 8-session hypnosis treatment) or to a control group (no treatment). Results show that hypnosis is effective in reducing blood pressure in the short term but also in the middle and long terms. We did not find any relationship between the practice of self-hypnosis and the evolution of blood pressure or between anxiety, personality factors, and therapeutic results. The implications of the results of the psychological treatment of hypertension are discussed.


Hypnotic Depth and Response to Hypnotic Suggestion Under Standardized Conditions and During fMRI Scanning
David A. Oakley, Quinton Deeley, and Peter W. Halligan

Abstract: Hypnosis is a potentially valuable cognitive tool for neuroimaging studies. However, understandable concern that Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) in particular may adversely affect hypnotic procedures remains. Measurements of hypnotic depth and responsiveness to suggestions were taken using a standardized procedure that met all the requirements for functional MRI (fMRI). Testing outside the scanning environment showed reliable and stable changes in subjective hypnotic depth, with no carry-over once the hypnosis had been terminated. Within-subject comparisons showed that the magnitude and pattern of these changes and the degree of responsiveness to hypnotic suggestion were not discernibly affected by the fMRI environment.  It is concluded that hypnosis can be employed as a discrete and reliable cognitive tool within fMRI neuroimaging settings.


A Spanish Version of the Barber Suggestibility Scale for the Puerto Rican Population
Lara Guzmán-Hosta, Alfonso Martínez-Taboas, and  José Rodríguez-Gómez

Abstract: Currently in Puerto Rico, there are no reliable and valid instruments to assess hypnotic responsiveness. The most widely utilized scales have not been scientifically translated and adapted with Puerto Ricans. In the present study, the Barber Suggestibility Scale (BSS) was translated and adapted using back-translation and decentralization. The translated BSS (the ESB) was individually administered to Puerto Rican college students (N = 85). No significant differences were found among the mean scores for the current sample on the ESB and the 1965 sample on the BSS. Both samples had similar score distributions. The internal consistency of the ESB was adequate, and there were significant correlations among scale items and total scores. The authors conclude that the ESB is an adequate instrument to measure hypnotic response within the Puerto Rican population.


Fractal Analysis of EEG in Hypnosis and its Relationship with Hypnotizability
Jun-Seok Lee, David Spiegel, Sae-Byul Kim, Jang-Han Lee, Sun-Il Kim, Byung-Hwan Yang, Joon-Ho Choi, Yong-Chul Kho, and Jung-Hyun Nam

Abstract: Fractal analysis was applied to study the trends of EEG signals in the hypnotic condition. The subjects were 19 psychiatric outpatients. Hypnotizability was measured with the Hypnotic Induction Profile (HIP). Fifty-four sets of EEG data were analyzed by detrended fluctuation analysis (DFA), a well-established fractal analysis technique. The scaling exponents, which are the results of fractal analysis, are reduced toward white noise during the hypnotic condition, which differentiates the hypnotic condition from the waking condition. Further, the decrease in the scaling exponents during hypnosis was solely associated with the eye-roll sign within specific cortical areas (F3, C4, and O1/2) closely related to eye movements and attention. In conclusion, the present study has found that the application of the fractal analysis technique can demonstrate the electrophysiological correlations with hypnotic influence on cerebral activity.

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