An investigation of hypnosis in asthma was made among patients aged 10 to 60 years with paroxysmal attacks of wheezing or tight chest capable of relief by bronchodilators. One group of patients was given hypnosis monthly and used autohypnosis daily for one year. Comparisons were made with a control group prescribed a specially devised set of breathing exercises aimed at progressive relaxation. Treatment was randomly allocated and patients were treated by physicians in nine centres.
One hundred male and 83 female subjects were assessed on absorption (i.e., involvement in everyday imaginative activities), attitudes toward hypnosis, and hypnotic suggestibility. Significant positive correlations were obtained for both sexes between absorption and attitudes and between each of these variables and hypnotic suggestibility. Multiple regression analyses indicated that most of the predicted variance in hypnotic suggestibility scores was accounted for in both sexes by the absorption variable.
Certain patients with bronchial asthma can benefit, often greatly, from hypnotherapy. This report is based on a retrospective analysis of 121 asthmatic patients who were treated by hypnotherapy. Hypnotic techniques and treatment procedure are described. Of the total number, 21% had an excellent response to treatment, becoming completely free from asthma and requiring no drug therapy. A further 33% had a good response, with worthwhile decrease in frequency and severity of the attacks of asthma, or a decrease in drug requirements.
British Journal of Psychology (London, England: 1953)
Following the study of Gibson & Curran (1974), a further sample of 45 subjects were tested on the Eysenck Personality Inventory (EPI) and a slightly modified form of the Stanford Hypnotic Susceptibility Scale (SHSS) in precisely the same way. The results in this second sample were broadly the same as those obtained in the earlier study. Combining the two samples, it was found that the sex variable provided some interesting contrasts. The power of the lie scale of the EPI to predict hypnotic susceptibility observed earlier was found to be a significant effect only for males.