There was a recent article in The Wall Street Journal about medical hypnosis. It describes some of the ways hypnosis is being used with medical issues.  One patient, a New York psychologist found that hypnosis helped put her at ease before biopsies, MRIs and surgeries.  David Spiegel, a psychiatrist and director of the Center for Health and Stress at Stanford University, was quoted as saying, "We can teach people how to manage pain and anxiety.  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."

     Today, hypnosis is used in a variety of medical situations from diminishing side effects from chemotherapy to easing migraine headaches.  Other medical issues worked with in hypnosis include, minimizing hot flashes, lowering blood pressure, controlling asthma attacks, and easing symptoms of irritable bowel symptoms.

     Burn victims, cancer patients and chronic pain sufferers may all find hypnosis another tool in dealing with their health issues.  As with any health or medical issue, I choose to work with a client on referral from their medical doctor.  No competent hypnotherapist would chose to disguise pain that might be a symptom of a serious health issue.  A client once asked me to help relieve her chronic headaches with the use of hypnosis..  I told her once I had a medical referral I would be happy to work with her.  When she went to her doctor for her referral, it turned out she had a large (thankfully benign) brain tumor.  She needed surgery and once it was performed she no longer had the headaches. 

     Think of hypnosis as another tool in your toolbox in working with your medical issue.  Find a trained hypnotherapist who has experience with medical hypnosis.  One Stanford study concluded that a hypnotic suggestion in the mind can have measurable effects in the body.  A study from Harvard Medical School reported patients who had 15 minutes of hypnosis before surgery needed not less pain medication but even took less time in surgery.  With a referral from your medical doctor and an experienced hypnotherapist, hypnosis could help you with your health problems.