Hypnotherapy may be helpful in Irritable Bowel Disease

31 October 2008

A group of researchers from Wythenshawe Hospital, Manchester found hypnotherapy was effective in improving the symptoms of Dyspepsia being painful, difficult or disturbed digestion, with symptoms including nausea, vomiting, heartburn, and bloating and stomach discomfort. 126 patients were randomised to receive hypnotherapy, supportive therapy or pharmaceutical medication. During the 16 week study, 13 supportive group patients and 10 pharmaceutical patients dropped out but none of the hypnotherapy patients. Analysis of the data gained immediately, and 40 weeks after treatment, found that Hypnotherapy resulted in significantly greater improvement in total symptom scores than supportive therapy and medical therapy. During follow up, the rate of patients who began some form of medication to help relieve the IBS symptoms was 82% in the supportive group, 90% in pharmaceutical group with 0% in the Hypnotherapy group. In conclusion, the authors deemed hypnotherapy as extremely effective in management of functional dyspepsia which can lead to a dramatic reduction in medication use. They also warranted the evaluation of Hypnotherapy in functional issues not confined to the gastrointestinal tract. Reference: Borolo M, Coccia G, Grossi G. Red Pepper and Functional Dyspepsia. New England Journal of Medicine 2002;346:947-8