Hypnotherapy for relief of pain and other symptoms in palliative care patients: A pilot study

T. Harlow, P. Jones, D. Shepherd, A. Hong, C. Greaves, George Walker

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


There is limited understanding of the role, scope, practicality and evidence for the value of hypnotherapy in palliative care. This was a pilot study to test the feasibility of researching hypnotherapy in palliative care and to begin to explore issues such as recruitment, effect sizes and appropriate symptoms to address. The study design was a randomized eight-week crossover study of four treatments of hypnotherapy with waiting list controls using MYMOP2 questionnaires. The participants, 32 adult patients, in-patient and out-patient, with life limiting illness, were referred over two years. 23 (72%) patients entered the study, 11 (34%) completed. (34%) died between referral and completion. There were some improvements in symptoms which did not reach statistical significance. This study suggests that hypnotherapy may have a place in the management of symptoms in palliative care patients and suggests ways to research this further including study design and power calculations.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)163-174
Number of pages12
JournalContemporary Hypnosis and Integrative Therapy
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2015


  • Hypnotherapy
  • Pain
  • Palliative care
  • Symptoms


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