International Journal of Clinical and Experimental Hypnosis

Published by Taylor & Francis

Online ISSN: 1744-5183


Print ISSN: 0020-7144


Self-hypnotic relaxation during interventional radiological procedures: Effects 012 pain perception and intravenous drug use
  • Article

May 1996


86 Reads


Janet S. Joyce





The authors evaluated whether self-hypnotic relaxation can reduce the need for intravenous conscious sedation during interventional radiological procedures. Sixteen patients were randomized to a test group, and 14 patients were randomized to a control group. All had patient-controlled analgesia. Test patients additionally had self-hypnotic relaxation and underwent a Hypnotic Induction Profile test. Compared to controls, test patients used less drugs (0.28 vs. 2.01 drug units; p < .01) and reported less pain (median pain rating 2 vs. 5 on a 0-10 scale; p < .01). Significantly more control patients exhibited oxygen desaturation and/or needed interruptions of their procedures for hemodynamic instability. Benefit did not correlate with hypnotizability. Self-hypnotic relaxation can reduce drug use and improve procedural safety.

On the use of TAT card 12M as an indicator of attitude toward hypnosis

August 1962


43 Reads

The results of investigations reported in this paper, and others which are summarized, indicate that responses to TAT Card 12M do not predict attitude toward hypnosis in female subjects, though such predictiveness has been reported for male respondents. The basis for this Werential predictiveness may be that the latter give a significantly greater proportion of themes involving hypnosis than do female subjects. A plausible explanatory hypothesis, based on perceptual theory and the stimulus properties of the card, is advanced.

Fluctuations in Hypnotic Susceptibility and Imaging Ability Over A 16-Hour Period

February 1995


32 Reads

Within-subject variability for hypnotic susceptibility as measured by the Harvard Group Scale of Hypnotic Susceptibility, Form A and for imaging ability as measured by the Vividness of Visual Imagery Questionnaire was determined over a 16-hour period. Half of the subjects were day persons, those most alert during daytime hours (as determined by the Alertness Questionnaire); the remaining subjects were night persons. For day persons, hypnotic susceptibility was greatest at 10:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m.; for night persons, susceptibility was greatest at 1:00 p.m. and between 6:00 p.m. and 9:00 p.m. Imaging ability also varied as a function of time of administration. However, these peak periods occurred before and after hypnotic susceptibility peaks. Such a pattern was interpreted as indicating the possible existence of an ultradian cycle for imaging ability.


November 2002


28 Reads

This article details the atmosphere surrounding the scientific community in France in 1784, the year of the Franklin Commission's report on Mesmer. The end of the 18th century heralded a victory of observation over systems and theories. Animal magnetism found itself in the midst of a conflict between the Old and the New World. The Franklin Commission, like so many other commissions at the time, was looking for measurable and quantifiable phenomena, the sole basis of progress in the health sciences. Mesmer and his system failed the test and were publicly denigrated. The Commission can be seen as the stepping stone to a more empirically based approach to the phenomenon of hypnosis, which would follow in the 19th century.

Benjamin Rush and Animal Magnetism, 1789 and 1812

February 1978


36 Reads

Little information is available about animal magnetism in the United States during the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries. An early assessment of animal magnetism in the United States was provided by Benjamin Rush in 1789 and 1812. Unlike Benjamin Franklin and his colleagues on the 1784 French commission who recognized the role of imagination, yet without its potential benefits, Rush discerned the value of both suggestion and imagination in their constructive potential and incorporated them into his medical practice while rejecting Mesmer's theories and techniques. This is of additional interest because of Rush's fame as an early American physician and his position as the father of American psychiatry.

The discovery of hypnosis - Braid's lost manuscript, "On hypnotism" (1860): A brief communication

May 2009


110 Reads

James Braid's last manuscript on hypnotism, summarizing his mature views and lost since his death, existed only in French and German translations. The author discusses the history and importance of this document, "On Hypnotism" (1860), as well as his new English version, translated back from the French and German editions. Braid's manuscript constitutes an important, missing jigsaw piece in the early history of psychological therapy and helps to explain the origin of hypnotherapy and correct certain historical misconceptions that have developed concerning the meaning of the term hypnotism. The rediscovery of this text provides additional evidence that hypnotism originated as an explicitly empirical and "common sense" reaction against the pseudo-scientific excesses of mesmerism. Although drawing heavily on excerpts from his previous writings, some of Braid's observations and techniques may renew interest among contemporary researchers and clinicians.

"On Hypnotism" (1860) De L'Hypnotisme

May 2009


53 Reads

James Braid's last essay on hypnotism, the culmination of his work, summarized in a French translation for the Academy of Sciences, is published in English with comments. According to Braid, hypnotism is a psychological ("subjective") approach, fundamentally opposed to the paranormal claims and magnetic ("objective") theories of mesmerism. Hypnotism operates primarily by means of dominant ideas that the attention of the subject is fixated upon. The reversibility of hypnotic amnesia is taken as evidence of "double consciousness." However, over 90% of Braid's subjects did not exhibit this state of dissociation or any sleep-like responses but merely a sense of "reverie." Good subjects are as suggestible in the "waking" state as others are in hypnotism.

Herbert Spiegel, MD, A Man for All Seasons: Early Personal and Professional Development, 1914–1946

January 2012


35 Reads

Herbert Spiegel, MD, was a pioneer in American psychiatry and the field of hypnosis, which he first started using as an army psychiatrist posted at Fort Meade, Maryland. He served as a battalion surgeon during the invasion of North Africa and later in the Tunisian campaign. On the battlefield, Spiegel used hypnosis for quick symptom resolution and pain control. He was wounded in action on May 7, 1943, and was awarded a Purple Heart for his courage and bravery. When Spiegel was evacuated back to America, he began writing about short-term treatment strategies based on cognitive restructuring, hypnosis, and other clinical techniques. This article details his early life and career.

In memoriam: don stolar, 1946-2008.
  • Article
  • Full-text available

August 2008


112 Reads


“Robbery by Hypnosis” in Italy: A Psycho-Criminological Analysis of the Phenomenon Based on 20 Years of Newspaper Articles (1988–2007)

October 2009


112 Reads

Shocking news of robberies committed using hypnosis on bank cashiers, salespeople, or passers-by has sporadically been reported by the media in countries around the world. The first reported episode in Italy dates to the 1950s. Although the phenomenon has been reported in the papers more frequently in recent years, no objective analysis of it has been published in the scientific literature. This paper analyzes 106 episodes recorded in Italy between 1988 and 2007, identified by a systematic review of the online and printed archives of Italian national and local dailies and of the database of the country's principal press agency. When they are analyzed from a psychological and criminological standpoint, there is no evidence to support any real use of hypnotic methods in the episodes described.

Late 19th- and Early 20th-Century Discussions of Animal Magnetism

October 2009


54 Reads

The mesmerists explained the phenomena of what was later called hypnosis as the effects of a force called animal magnetism. Both psychologists' and physicians' writings generally create the impression that the magnetic movement disappeared after the mid-19th century. While the concept of animal magnetism declined significantly by the end of the 19th century, it did not disappear completely. Some examples include the work of Hector Durville, Henri Durville, Emile Magnin, and Edmund Shaftesbury. Detailed accounts of the work of Edmund Gurney and Albert de Rochas are presented. Similar to its earlier counterpart, the late mesmeric movement was associated with what today is known as parapsychological phenomena. This association, and the belief that the demise of magnetic theory represents scientific progress, has led many to emphasize a history that is incomplete.

Salient findings in the hypnosis literature: April 2002

May 2002


19 Reads

Four important investigations were reported during the latter part of 2001. All address the biological impact of hypnotic interventions. Three of these studies focus specifically on if and how hypnotic interventions affect immune functions. A range of immune assays is employed, from allergic response to blood-based assays of immune functioning during nonlaboratory periods of stress. In all 3 cases, measurable shifts in immune functioning are associated with hypnotic interventions. A 4th compares the pattern of event-related brain potentials (ERPs) associated with hypnotic analgesia interventions and standard distraction protocols during exposure to pain.

Hypnosis, the brain, and sports: Salient Findings July 2002

August 2002


59 Reads

Three particularly noteworthy articles addressing hypnosis have been published during the early portion of 2002. All, to a degree, address biological aspects of hypnotic response. One of these articles is a thoughtful summary and synthesis of neuroscience/hypnosis research to date, describing how neuroimaging techniques offer new opportunities to use hypnosis as a manipulation and to provide a means of studying hypnosis itself. A second article focuses on the physiology of sports and the usefulness of hypnosis in the practice of sport and exercise psychology. Finally, the third article describes a study of brain activation during actual and imagined handgrip during hypnosis.

Forging Ahead: The 2003 APA Division 30 Definition of Hypnosis

August 2005


260 Reads

The article describes the rationale for and the process of developing a new definition of hypnosis by the Society of Psychological Hypnosis, Division 30 of the American Psychological Association. Both theoretical and practical implications led to the production of the definition, which is targeted toward informing clinicians, researchers, and the lay public alike. DOWNLOADABLE FILE IS DEFINITION ONLY FROM PAGE 262—THIS IS NOT THE WHOLE ARTICLE

An Eye for an I: A 35-Year-Old Woman With Fluctuating Oculomotor Deficits and Dissociative Identity Disorder

July 2013


120 Reads

Abstract Physiologic changes, including neurological or pseudo-neurological symptoms, occur across identity states in dissociative identity disorder (DID) and can be objectively measured. The idea that dissociative phenomena might be associated with changes in brain function is consistent with research on the brain effects of hypnosis. The authors report a case of psycho-physiologic differences among 4 alter personalities manifested by a 35-year-old woman with DID. Differences in visual acuity, frequency of pendular nystagmus, and handedness were observed in this patient both when the alter personalities appeared spontaneously and when elicited under hypnosis. The authors consider several diagnostic possibilities for these findings and discuss whether prevailing treatment recommendations for DID patients could possibly be modified to ameliorate such visual and neurologic symptoms.

Treatment of Exhibitionism in a 38-Year-Old Male by Hypnotically Assisted Covert Sensitization

August 1983


20 Reads

This case study reports the successful treatment of a 38-year-old male with a 14-year history of exhibitionism. A multifaceted treatment program was used, involving hypnotically assisted covert sensitization and brief marital therapy. Hypnosis was used to develop psychic aversive and reinforcing stimuli from the patient's past experience. The value of hypnosis in enhancing imagery in cognitive treatment approaches and the need for only experienced clinicians to utilize the present intervention strategy is discussed.

Past-Life Identities, Ufo Abductions, and Satanic Ritual Abuse: The Social Construction of Memories

November 1994


181 Reads

People sometimes fantasize entire complex scenarios and later define these experiences as memories of actual events rather than as imaginings. This article examines research associated with three such phenomena: past-life experiences, UFO alien contact and abduction, and memory reports of childhood ritual satanic abuse. In each case, elicitation of the fantasy events is frequently associated with hypnotic procedures and structured interviews which provide strong and repeated demands for the requisite experiences, and which then legitimate the experiences as "real memories." Research associated with these phenomena supports the hypothesis that recall is reconstructive and organized in terms of current expectations and beliefs.

The effect of hypnotic ablation of the background on the magnitude of the Ponzo perspective illusion

August 1973


25 Reads

In an attempt to develop an objective measure of hypnotic perception, and also to test the stability of the Ponzo perspective illusion, negative hallucinations were hypnotically induced to ablate the radiating lines of the Ponzo configuration. 3 groups of Ss (including 1 group of simulators) were tested across 3 conditions—unhypnotized, hypnotized, and hypnotized with hallucination instructions. Results indicated that the suggested hallucination did not affect susceptibility to the illusion. Results also suggested that certain hypnotically susceptible Ss might be more susceptible to the Ponzo under all experimental conditions than non-susceptible Ss. It was concluded that suggested hallucinations do not affect performance on the Ponzo illusion and that the Ponzo is a very stable illusion and appears to be highly resistant to variations in instructions and experimental set, as induced by hypnosis.

Hypnotically induced amnesia versus ablation of memory

July 1970


14 Reads

33 hypnotizable Ss, all capable of achieving the criterion of amnesia for a 7-digit number, were divided into 3 groups: 2 hypnotized and 1 pretend. The distributions of errors for an amnesic performance of these groups were compared with the theoretical chance distribution of errors expected in an amnesic performance. Both hypnotized groups differed signiticantly from the pretend group and from the theoretical distribution, while the performance of the pretend group did not differ significantly from the chance distribution. The performance of the pretend group conformed to the expectancy for amnesia significantly better than did the performance of either of the hypnosis groups.

Proactive interference and the functional ablation hypothesis: More disconfirmatory data

February 1983


25 Reads

According to the functional ablation hypothesis, memories for which amnesia has been hypnotically suggested do not interact with other information in memory. This hypothesis was tested in 2 interrelated experiments. In Experiment 1,Ss high and low in hypnotic susceptibility were administered a hypnotic induction procedure and tested on a Brown-Peterson (e.g., Wickens & Gittis, 1974) memory task designed to induce proactive interference (PI).Ss were exposed to 10 blocks of successive 3-word lists. Within each block, all words were strongly related, and, therefore, lists presented early in a block interfered with the retention of lists presented later (PI “buildup”). Following the “buildup” of PI,Ss were administered either a cue to be amnesic for the previous words of a block or a cue to relax. Contrary to the functional ablation hypothesis, the amnesia suggestion did not produce a “release” from PI in high susceptible hypnoticSs. In other words, the amnesia suggestion did not prevent previously learned material from interfering with newly presented material. Experiment 2 demonstrated that the amnesia cues employed in the Brown-Peterson task produced a reversible recall deficit even though they failed to produce PI “release.” These findings are consistent with the results of studies of the functional ablation hypothesis using the retroactive interference paradigms.

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