Using Hypnosis for Hernia Surgery

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      Recently I worked with a gentleman in his late sixties who was entering the hospital for an outpatient hernia surgery. He was nervous about the surgery as he is the type of person who has a negative opinion regarding conventional medicine and anything having to do with hospitals. In fact, he had been delaying the surgery for years.

      The day before the surgery, I visited him in his home and did a very relaxing session with him. In the session, we focused on his attitude upon entering the hospital; his physical cooperation with the procedure along with a mental rehearsal of the entire event.

      At the end of the session, he commented on how comfortable and relaxed he felt about the impending event. He invited me to stop by the recovery room the following day to check on his progress

      I arrived about 15 minutes after he was out of recovery. He looked very good and all of his vital signs were in the normal range. The surgery had gone just as planned. Because he was doing so well, the hospital released him into the care of his friend who promised to look after him for the next 24 hours.

      Early in the evening, I stopped by his home again to check on his progress.  He had felt comfortable most of the day but was finally beginning to have some discomfort as the anesthetic began wearing off. He decided he did not want to take any of the prescribed pain killers the doctor ordered even though he had filled his prescription before going home.

      We decided to do another session focusing on pain control. He relaxed in his bed going into a very deep trance state. During this session, I taught him self-hypnosis techniques to access and work with his comfort levels on his own. At the end of the session, he was so comfortable; he decided to stay in bed and go to sleep for the night.

      The following day, he reported that he did not require any chemical medication. In fact, throughout his brief recovery, he did not take any pain medication.

      Hypnosis is a useful tool for controlling pain. In April of 2008, John Butler, a professional hypnotherapist working in the UK, put himself into a deep state of hypnosis for his own hernia surgery. Dr. Hennigan, his surgeon, performed the surgery without chemical anesthesia while Mr. Butler remained comfortable throughout. Hennigan said, “If there is a potentially powerful effect then we should explore it. Hypnosurgery is being used all over the world and people say they have less post-operative pain and faster recovery.”


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Jo Moon