Hypnosis is a well validated treatment for acute and chronic pain (Montgomery, DuHamel, & Redd, 2000). It has been found capable of reducing inflammation, altering blood flow, and producing beneficial effects when hypnotic suggestions are provided during and prior to surgery (Frederick, 2001) and other painful medical procedures. This paper quotes extensively from historical examples of the use of hypnosis (mesmerism) as the sole anesthesia for major surgeries in the 1800's. These historic examples by themselves provide powerful documentation of the ability of the mind to influence the body, but they are then followed by a review of contemporary literature and controlled research on the use in hypnosis in relation to surgery and prior to medical procedures.
Am J Clin Hypn. 2008 Oct;51(2):101-21. Hammond DC. University of Utah School of Medicine, PM&R, 30 No. 1900 East, Salt Lake City, Utah 84132-2119, USA. D.C.Hammond@utah.edu