Effects of Hypnotic Analgesia and Virtual Reality on the Reduction of Experimental Pain Among High and Low Hypnotizables

This research compared a no-treatment control condition and 3 experimentally induced pain treatment conditions: (a) virtual reality distraction (VRD), (b) hypnotic analgesia (HA), and (c) HA + VRD in relieving finger-pressure pain. After receiving baseline pain stimulus, each participant received hypnosis or no hypnosis, followed by VRD or no VRD during another pain stimulus. The data analysis indicated that, overall, all 3 treatments were more effective compared to the control group, irrespective of whether it involved hypnotic analgesia, virtual reality distraction, or both (hypnosis and virtual reality). Nevertheless, the participants responded differently to the pain treatment, depending on the hypnotizability level. High hypnotizables reported hypnotic analgesia, but low hypnotizables did not show hypnotic analgesia. VR distraction reduced pain regardless of hypnotizability.

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