Hot Flashes in Menopausal Women may Be Reduced by Hypnotic Relaxation

by Rajashri on Sep 26 2008 3:35 PM

A new study says that hypnotic relaxation therapy can decrease the frequency and severity of hot flashes in menopausal women.

According to researchers, interference from hot flashes, like loss of sleep and social interaction difficulties, also significantly decreased in the majority of women who received hypnosis.

The research has been published online in The Journal of Clinical Oncology.

"This study validates that this type of treatment is effective in decreasing hot flashes," said Dr. Gary Elkins, professor of psychology and neuroscience at Baylor and a lead investigator on the project.

"There is a real need to study emerging mind-body interactions to treating these ailments because many times medications are not an option," the expert added.

In the study, 26 women who are breast cancer survivors received hypnotic relaxation therapy and were compared to 25 other breast cancer survivors who did not receive treatment. The women who received hypnosis reported a 68 percent decrease in hot flashes. Anxiety, depression and insomnia also decreased.

Breast cancer survivors were chosen because the medications that are given to these women to help prevent the reoccurrence of breast cancer often times cause them to go into menopause in a matter of days.