Hypnosis for nausea and vomiting in cancer chemotherapy.
Faculty of Health & Social Work at the University of Plymouth in the UK reviewed the research literature and found that hypnosis is highly effective for reducing chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting, especially in children.
Six qualifying studies (randomized, controlled trials or RCTs) evaluating the effectiveness of hypnosis in CINV were found. In five of these studies the participants were children. The studies reported positive results, including statistically significant reductions in both anticipatory and chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting.
Meta-analysis revealed a large effect size of hypnotic treatment when compared with treatment as usual, and the effect was at least as large as that of cognitive-behavioral therapy, thus demonstrating that hypnosis could be a clinically valuable intervention for anticipatory and CINV in children with cancer.
Further research into the effectiveness, acceptance and feasibility of hypnosis in CINV, particularly in adults, was suggested. The investigators also noted that future studies should provide full details of the hypnotic intervention.
Psychotherapist, author and guided imagery pioneer Belleruth Naparstek is the creator of the popular Health Journeys guided imagery audio series. Her latest book on imagery and posttraumatic stress, Invisible Heroes: Survivors of Trauma and How They Heal (Bantam Dell), won the Spirituality & Health Top 50 Books Award