Tomé-Pires, C., & Miró, J. (2012). Hypnosis for the management of chronic and cancer procedure-related pain in children. International Journal of Clinical and Experimental Hypnosis, 60, 432–457.doi: 10.1080/00207144.2012.701092
STUDY PURPOSE: To review published trials of hypnotic treatments for children with chronic and cancer-related pain
TYPE OF STUDY: Systematic review
TOTAL REFERENCES RETRIEVED: 81
EVALUATION METHOD AND COMMENTS ON LITERATURE USED: No study quality evaluation reported
All studies in children with cancer were related to acute procedure-related pain and anxiety. Hypnotic interventions were better at reducing pain than no treatment, standard care, placebo, and attention control. Compared to other psychological treatments, hypnosis had about the same effectiveness as cognitive behavioral therapy. Comparison of hypnosis to distraction showed mixed results. Younger patients had significantly better responses to hypnosis. Parents of those receiving hypnosis had lower anxiety. Results of hypnosis on anxiety were mixed. One study showed similar effects between hypnosis and play. Calculated effect sizes with hypnosis showed decrease in pain of 20%–80%. In four studies that included follow up at 3–12 months, therapeutic effects appeared to be long-lasting.
Hypnosis is effective in reducing acute procedure-related pain among children with cancer.
Studies tended to have small samples, and many of these studies were done by the same group of researchers.
Findings of this systematic review support the use of hypnosis in children undergoing invasive procedures for reduction in pain. Nurses can advocate for availability of this intervention in pediatric settings.