Patients can often become stressed or anxious prior to skin surgery. This stress can create procedural issues such as postponement or cancellation or surgery.  Other issues include fainting, abnormal changes in blood flow and severe emotional disturbance.

This paper investigates a number of different strategies for reducing preoperative anxiety. These include slower breathing, biofeedback, progressive muscular relaxation, guided imagery, hypnosis, meditation and music. The advantages of hypnotherapy and self-hypnosis recordings over other strategies are discussed.

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There are two separate studies in this review paper. The first study tests whether a year-long weekly group intervention including hypnosis can reduce cancer pain among women with metastatic breast cancer.

One hundred and twenty four metastatic breast cancer patients were randomly assigned into two groups. Both groups met weekly for a one year in duration. The intervention group received training in hypnosis and self-hypnosis at the end of each session whereas the control group did not. The researchers observed that the benefit of therapy plus hypnosis was that, on average, it helped patients avoid the increases in pain experienced by patients who did not receive hypnotherapy in their treatment.

In the second study forty women with Temporomandibular Disorder were randomly assigned to either a hypnosis intervention group or a relaxation control group. Both groups received four individual 1-hour sessions with take-home compact disc and instructions to practice during the week.

The researchers found that both the relaxation group and the hypnosis group realized significant reductions in the number of painful muscle palpation sites and pain on palpation, the number of awakenings at night, and Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD) symptoms. However, only the hypnosis group significantly reduced the daily pain ratings and increased the use of critical coping strategies.

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This paper provides examples of techniques and approaches which can potentially enhance the treatment gains of cognitive behaviour al therapy by combining them with hypnotherapy .

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This paper describes an intensive hypnotherapy treatment program for drug and alcohol addiction. Drug addicted patients were seen once a day, five days a week for four weeks. A 77% success rate was observed after a 1 year follow-up.

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This article describes four case studies where hypnotherapy was used to help overcome depression and improve self-confidence and self-esteem.

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This study investigates the ability of hypnosis to modulate upper digestive motor and secretory function. The effectiveness of hypnotherapy in the treatment upper bowel disease is also discussed.

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Clinical studies of hypnotherapy have shown significant improvement of gastrointestinal symptoms, anxiety, depression and general quality of life for people suffering from irritable bowel syndrome.

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