Reducing Pain Among Women With Metastatic Breast Cancer and Temporomandibular Disorder

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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