Use of aromatherapy (with or without hypnosis) in the treatment of intractable epilepsy - a two-year follow-up study

Timothy Betts

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    29 Citations (Scopus)


    We have been trying the effect of aromatherapy (with or without hypnosis) in patients with intractable epilepsy who ask for it. This is a report of the first 100 patients to try the treatment, followed up for at least two years after the treatment ended.It is important to remember that this was a treatment for people who had asked for it and for whom time and a therapist was available. It was not a controlled trial but was carried out when we could and at a time when we were experimenting with the best way of using it. Results must therefore be treated with caution and with due regard to other therapeutic factors that may be implicated in the results, both good and bad. We assume that the result (with over a third of the patients using aromatherapy with or without hypnosis becoming seizure free for at least a year) as being the best that could be achieved and likely to be less in a properly controlled trial. Of the three treatments tried (aromatherapy on its own, aromatherapy plus hypnosis and hypnosis without aromatherapy), aromatherapy plus hypnosis seems to have had the best and most lasting effect (a third of patients still seizure free at two years), but was the most labour intensive and needed medical therapist input. Aromatherapy itself might be best reserved as a short-term treatment for people going through a bad time with their seizures. A fuller and more lasting effect may be obtained with aromatherapy plus hypnosis, but this needs a patient who is prepared to put much time and personal effort into the treatment.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)534-538
    Number of pages5
    Issue number8
    Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2003


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