Hypnotherapy in Palliative Care
Dr Rumi Peynovska, Stone House Hospital; Dr Jackie Fisher, Wisdom Hospice,
Professor V.M. Mathew, Stone House Hospital, West Kent NHS and Social Care Trust
AIM OF THE STUDY
To study the benefits of Hypnotherapy, as a supplement therapy in the management of terminally ill patients.
Hypnotherapy is a brief psychotherapeutic approach, which utilizes the persons’ ability to enter into trance and thus make ones mind receptive to therapeutic suggestions given during the session.
Hypnosis has been recognized as an effective psychotherapeutic instrument in panoply of psychological and psychosomatic conditions.
22 cancer patients were offered three hypnotherapy sessions and were assessed with the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale before and after the third session together with a follow up after 3 to 4 months after the last session. To avoid bias, patients were also, independently assessed by the nursing staff using a visual assessment scale of 1 to 10.
Particular attention was paid to: management of anxiety, depression, anger, frustration, management of pain, fatigue, insomnia, management of side-effects of chemotherapy and radiotherapy.
All hypnotherapy sessions were individually tailored to cover the specific individual needs and symptoms.
Of the 22 patients who took part in the study all reported reduction in their anxiety level, feelings of improved well-being and self-confidence and much better day to day coping skills. There was no significant improvement in the depression level.
The present study represents a small number of patients who showed a clear benefit from the use of hypnosis in alleviating a number of symptoms associated with cancer illness. Despite the limitations of the small number of patients and the short-term follow-up, the findings suggest that hypnotherapy is a valuable tool especially with regard to enhancing the coping mechanisms of cancer patients.
Research looking into the effectiveness of Hypnotherapy and Cancer is showing that Hypnotherapy can help cancer patients successfully deal with anxiety, panic attacks, fear, stress, pain management, sleeping problems, medical therapy compliance, radio and chemotherapy treatment and many other psychosomatic and psychological complaints.
Techniques such as guided imagery and visualisation techniques can also help patients to achieve relaxation and boost their immune system thus aiding the fight against cancer and helping the healing process.
- Posted by Oak Tree Therapies
- On May 15, 2019