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October 2004 - English PDF Print E-mail

The International Journal of Clinical and Experimental Hypnosis
Volume 52, Number 4 - October 2004 - English


Salient Findings
Michael R. Nash

Abstract: A summary of 3 papers of special interest to researchers and clinicians that appeared in the general scientific and medical literatures. All are robust, empirically grounded studies, however, each differs in its approach and design. These studies are exemplars of customizing design to the question asked and the opportunities afforded by setting. The first addresses delusions of alien control in the human brain; the second examines mechanisms accounting for the efficacy of hypnosis in the treatment of irritable bowel syndrome; the third is an extraordinarily clever empirically grounded N-of-1 case study tracking the behavioral treatment of a teenager with motor and vocal tics Taken together, these three studies illustrate the variety of research designs that can be used to bring evidence to bear on important matters of theory and practice.


Pain Reduction Strategies In Hypnotic Context and Hypnosis: ERPs and SCRs During a Secondary Auditory Task
Vilfredo De Pascalis, Anna Bellusci, Carlo Gallo, Maria Rosaria Magurano, and Andrew C.N. Chen

Pain-rating scores were obtained from 10 high, 10 medium, and 10 low hypnotizable subjects who were holding a painful cold bottle in their left hands and were exposed to pain reduction treatments while they were performing a secondary oddball task. All subjects received suggestions of dissociative imagery and focused analgesia as cognitive strategies for pain reduction. The following measures were obtained for tone targets of the auditory oddball task: (a) reaction time; (b) P300 peak amplitude of the event-related potentials (ERPs); (c) skin conductance levels and skin conductance responses. Focused analgesia produced the most pain reduction in high, but not medium or low, hypnotizable subjects who showed shorter reaction times, higher central and parietal P300 peaks, and higher skin conductance responses. These findings were discussed vis-à-vis the dissociated-control model assuming that capacity demands of hypnotic suggestion are low


Examining the Absorption-Hypnotizability Link: The Roles of Acquiescence and Consistency Motivation
James R. Council and Joseph P. Green

Abstract: The Tellegen Absorption Scale (TAS) is one of the few personality measures commonly found to correlate with hypnotizability. However, a number of studies have found that the correlation is strongly influenced by contextual factors. Three studies examined acquiescence (or “yeasaying”) and consistency motivation as possible contributors to context effects on the absorptionhypnotizability link. Results indicate that acquiescence and consistency effects are likely to influence the level of association between the TAS and hypnotic responsiveness.


Does the Positive-Keying of the TAS Inflate the Absorption-Hypnotizability Link?
Joseph P. Green and James R. Council

Abstract: The search for correlates of hypnotic responsiveness has been largely unsuccessful, with the notable exception of the construct “absorption.” The Tellegen Absorption Scale (TAS) has been shown to correlate with hypnotic responsiveness, particularly if the two measures are administered in the same testing context or setting. The present study set out to determine whether the alltrue, positively-keyed format of the TAS inflates the absorption-hypnotizability link. With a sample of 466 participants, the authors show that wording the TAS items in either a positive or negative direction does not affect the correlation between the TAS and the Harvard Group Scale of Hypnotic Susceptibility, Form A.


Acceptance of Medical Hypnosis by Oral and Maxillofacial Patients
Dirk Hermes, Samer G. Hakim, and Peter Sieg

Abstract: Prognosis in surgical treatment of diseases of the oral and maxillofacial region under local anaesthesia is quite commonly restricted by compliance by the patient. An alternative approach, medical hypnosis, has not been used in oral and maxillofacial surgery to any significant degree. As such, hypnosis treatment also depends to a great extent on the cooperation of the patient, and it would seem advisable to collect information concerning the individual motivation for accepting such a treatment option. The questionnaire consisted of 21 questions and was handed out to patients of the department. A total of 310 questionnaires were evaluated statistically, and the result shows a high level of acceptance of medical hypnosis by patients being treated surgically in the oral and maxillofacial region. The authors conclude that the effectiveness of this treatment option should be examined in clinical studies.


Single-Visit Hypnotic Cure of Stentorian Snoring: A Brief Communication
Dabney M. Ewin

Abstract: This is a report of a single-visit hypnotic cure of a woman who snored so loudly that she had to sleep in a back room at home. Her snoring recurred a year later when her orthopedist prescribed a muscle relaxant drug, and it again responded to a suggestion to “let it be impossible" to make that sound. There was no recurrence in a 4-year follow-up.


A teaching model of hypnosis in psychiatric residency training
Erik Hoencamp

Abstract: A stepwise hypnosis-training model for psychiatric residents is presented as used in the Netherlands. Hypnosis is presented to residents as an intervention that can be incorporated into the treatment of various types of disorders in structured, time-limited units. The model takes into account the usual reluctance and insecurity of the psychiatric resident, who is usually encountering hypnosis for the first time.


Confirmatory Factor Analysis of the Valencia Scale on Attitudes and Beliefs Toward Hypnosis: An International Study
Antonio Capafons, Sonia Cabañas, Begoña Espejo, and Etzel Cardeña

Abstract: Cognitions held about hypnosis have an important impact on areas such as initial rapport and hypnotic-treatment compliance. The Valencia Scale on Attitudes and Beliefs toward Hypnosis may be the first instrument specifically geared to the Spanish-speaking population. Besides measuring these cognitions, the scale can also help evaluate the effect of clinical and experimental manipulations on people’s attitudes and beliefs toward hypnosis. The article presents a confirmatory factor analysis using a sample from 5 different countries (n = 2,402). Test-retest analyses were also carried out. The authors found statistical confirmation for an 8-factor model solution: automatism, help, personal control, interest, magical solution, collaboration, memory, and marginal. They also obtained good estimates of reliability for each factor using new statistical techniques, instead of Cronbach’s alpha, which may underestimate reliability.


Facilitating Memory With Hypnosis, Focused Meditation and Eye Closure
G.F. Wagstaff, J. Brunas-Wagstaff, J. Cole, L. Knapton, J. Winterbottom, V. Crean, J. and J. Wheatcroft

Abstract: Three experiments examined some features of hypnotic induction that might be useful in the development of brief memory-facilitation procedures. The first involved a hypnosis procedure designed to facilitate face identification; the second employed a brief, focused-meditation (FM) procedure, with and without eye closure, designed to facilitate memory for an emotional event. The third experiment was a check for simple motivation and expectancy effects. Limited facilitation effects were found for hypnosis, but these were accompanied by increased confidence in incorrect responses. However, eye closure and FM were effective in facilitating free recall of an event without an increase in errors. FM reduced phonemic fluency, suggesting that the effectiveness of FM was not due to simple changes in expectancy or motivation.

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