A study from the latest issue of the medical journal "Gut", talks about hypnosis being successful for patients with non-cardiac chest pain. I want to emphasize that these patients were first checked to make sure that there was no cardiac reasons for the chest pain and no heartburn!
The causes of non-cardiac chest pain, are unknown. Sometimes, so much anxiety is created that, many people with the condition actually seek more care than patients with bona fide heart disease.Many patients still have symptoms even after treatment with gastric acid-lowering drugs and antidepressants.
As a point of interest, It is known that there are receptor sites for the "information molecules" (receptors and ligands) on the cells of our enodcrine, neurological, gastrointestinal and immune systems) that Candace Pert talks about in her book "Molecules of Emotion".
On with the article from "Gut" magazine:
Dr. Peter J. Whorwell and colleagues at Wythenshawe Hospital in Manchester, England have previously shown that functional gastrointestinal disorders, such as irritable bowel syndrome, respond well to hypnotherapy.
Based on that success, they tested the strategy in 28 patients with non-cardiac chest pain who were randomly assigned to hypnotherapy or just supportive listening. Both interventions were administered in twelve 30-minute sessions over 17 weeks.
The hypnosis started with participants being told that their symptoms could be due to disturbances of motility, visceral sensation and stress. Then, after progressive muscular relaxation, 'chest-focused' suggestions were introduced, "centered around normalization of function" of the esophagus, the investigators explain. Patients were advised to practice the techniques daily.
Eighty percent of patients in the hypnosis group had complete or moderate improvements in chest pain compared with only 23 percent of those in the non-hypnosis group. Corresponding improvements in general well-being were reported by 73 percent and 23 percent.
Hypnosis was also associated with significantly greater reductions in pain severity as assessed on a linear analog scale and by decreased medication use, as well as with a trend toward reduced frequency of pain.
We are becoming more and more accepted.