Self-Hypnosis and Clinical Hypnosis in Palliative Care for Reducing Anxiety and Pain Related to Severe Chronic Diseases

(Source: Hypnosis)

Main Point:

The analgesic effect of hypnosis is a matter of interest and a key focus for researchers to improve the patient’s quality of life. It has emerged as an important tool for rerouting pain sensations and relaxing patients suffering from severe chronic illness. Patients suffering from advanced cancer and severe chronic diseases experience anxiety and a complex range of pain. Brugnoli et al. (2018) carried out a long-term intervention of 2 years to evaluate the role of hypnosis in mitigating pain.

Published in:

Annals of Palliative Medicine

Study Further:

The research method was performed at the University of Verona, Italy, in the departments of Intensive Care and Pain Therapy and the Center of Anesthesiology. Brugnoli et al. (2018) selected 50 participants suffering from oncologic pain, neurologic pain, and rheumatic pain. In this non-randomized clinical trial, a control group and an experimental group were designed. Each group contained 25 research participants. In the control group, patients dealt with pharmacological treatment only. However, in the experimental group, hypnosis was induced as an intervention along with pharmacological therapy. The Hamilton Anxiety Rating Scale (HAM-A) and the Visual Analog Scale (VAS) were used for the evaluation and assessment of pain and anxiety. Brugnoli et al. (2018) concluded that hypnosis as adjuvant therapy for patients receiving pharmacological treatment reduces the intensity of pain many times. The group of patients receiving both hypnosis and medical attention showed a reduction in pain scores as compared to control group patients. According to variance analysis, the reduction in perceived pain was found to be highly significant in the hypnosis group. A decrease in the anxiety score of patients was observed. It fell from 32.6 to 22.9 for the 1st year and 17.1 for the 2nd year follow up. As per ANOVA results, a significant difference was found between control group and experimental group results for pain and anxiety scores.


Brugnoli, M. P., Pesce, G., Pasin, E., Basile, M. F., Tamburin, S., & Polati, E. (2018). The role of clinical hypnosis and self-hypnosis to relief pain and anxiety in severe chronic diseases in palliative care: a 2-year long-term follow-up of treatment in a nonrandomized clinical trial. Ann Palliat Med, 7(1), 17-31.

Nagina Anwar

Nagina Anwar is Medical and Business graduate (Pharm. D - gold medalist, MPhil, MBA exec., B.Sc.). She is pursuing her career in the field of education and freelancing as a lecturer and content writer, respectively. Writing is her passion, which she is pursuing for the last 6 years. She is continuously unlocking new horizons with national and international projects.