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J Clin Oncol. 2008 Nov 1;26(31):5022-6. doi: 10.1200/JCO.2008.16.6389. Epub 2008 Sep 22.

Randomized trial of a hypnosis intervention for treatment of hot flashes among breast cancer survivors.

Author information

1
Department of Psychology and Neuroscience, Baylor University, Waco, TX 76798, USA. Gary_Elkins@baylor.edu

Abstract

PURPOSE:

Hot flashes are a significant problem for many breast cancer survivors. Hot flashes can cause discomfort, disrupted sleep, anxiety, and decreased quality of life. A well-tolerated and effective mind-body treatment for hot flashes would be of great value. On the basis of previous case studies, this study was developed to evaluate the effect of a hypnosis intervention for hot flashes.

PATIENTS AND METHODS:

Sixty female breast cancer survivors with hot flashes were randomly assigned to receive hypnosis intervention (five weekly sessions) or no treatment. Eligible patients had to have a history of primary breast cancer without evidence of detectable disease and 14 or more weekly hot flashes for at least 1 month. The major outcome measure was a bivariate construct that represented hot flash frequency and hot flash score, which was analyzed by a classic sums and differences comparison. Secondary outcome measures were self-reports of interference of hot flashes on daily activities.

RESULTS:

Fifty-one randomly assigned women completed the study. By the end of the treatment period, hot flash scores (frequency x average severity) decreased 68% from baseline to end point in the hypnosis arm (P < .001). Significant improvements in self-reported anxiety, depression, interference of hot flashes on daily activities, and sleep were observed for patients who received the hypnosis intervention (P < .005) in comparison to the no treatment control group.

CONCLUSION:

Hypnosis appears to reduce perceived hot flashes in breast cancer survivors and may have additional benefits such as reduced anxiety and depression, and improved sleep.

PMID:
18809612
PMCID:
PMC2652097
DOI:
10.1200/JCO.2008.16.6389
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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