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Am J Clin Hypn. 2002 Jul;45(1):11-20.

The role of hypnosis in the detection of psychogenic seizures.

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Carlos Albizu University.


In this preliminary clinical investigation, hypnosis was used in the differential diagnosis of epileptic versus psychogenic seizures (PS). Eight patients with a clinical profile suggesting the presence of PS were given a hypnotic suggestion in which they had to go back in time to the exact moment of their last seizure. They were then asked to concentrate their attention on any unusual feeling or bodily sensation. All 8 patients presented a PS during the age regression protocol. In 6 cases, independent testimony from family members corroborated the morphological similarity of the induced attack and the ones presented in their natural environment. Also, the seizures ended abruptly after a command was given to stop them. A control group of 5 epileptic subjects did not present any signs of discomfort or seizure behavior during the hypnotic protocol. It is argued that a simple procedure as the one described in this investigation can be useful as a diagnostic tool in the differentiation of epileptic from PS attacks.

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