Medical Hypnosis: Pain Control & IBS Relief

Excerpts from The Wall Street Journal*
April 9, 2012
Provided by Peter R. Dufour MA, CHT, Ph.D. 

Medical Hypnosis is one of the oldest and most documented psychologic interventions for reducing clinical pain and suffering. (Doddy, Smith & Webb, 1991).

Hypnosis for Pain Management

In recent years, hypnosis has become more acceptable as an effective therapeutic intervention in a variety of health issues. Scientists differ on theories about the nature of hypnosis; however, it is well known that persons who are hypnotized report positive changes in the way they think, feel, and behave, and often reduces the need for opioid medication.

When in hypnosis, ” We can teach people how to manage pain and anxiety,” says Dr. David Spiegel, psychiatrist and Director of the Center for health & Stress at Stanford University who has studied hypnosis for 40 years. “There’s been this mistake in medicine that if you have a certain amount of tissue damage, you should feel this amount of pain. But many things can alter how much pain you feel.”

There is increasing evidence that hypnosis can be effective in a variety of other medical conditions, from easing migraine headaches to lowering blood pressure, diminishing the side effects of chemotherapy and Irritable Bowel Syndrome.

Why Consider Hypnosis for IBS?

Dr. Olafur S. Paisson, Psy.D. states that  “Hypnosis  is one of the most successful treatment approaches for chronic IBS. The response rate to treatment is 80% and better in most published studies to date.”

 In the Wall Street Journal dated April 9th, 2012, two studies from Sweden “found that one hour a week of hypnotherapy for 12 weeks eased symptoms of irritable-bowel syndrome in 40% of patients (compared with 12% in a control group) and that the positive effects can last as long as seven years.”

 Of course, there are many other effective treatment options. However, Dr. Olafur Paisson states that “Hypnosis may be especially suitable when severe chronic symptoms continue after standard medical management approaches have been tried. It [hypnosis] utilizes the healing power of the person’s own mind. . . it is a uniquely comfortable form of treatment, relaxing, easy, and generally enjoyable.”


If you are experiencing these or other issues that impact your health, call Dr. Dufour at 541-619-4469 to discuss whether he would be able to help you.

*Used with permission from The Wall Street Journal, Copyright 2016 Dow Jones & Company, Inc. All rights reserved.