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Trance and Treatment: Clinical Uses of Hypnosis

Trance and Treatment: Clinical Uses of Hypnosis

by Herbert Spiegel

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What is hypnosis? Despite widespread misconceptions, hypnosis is not a treatment in itself; instead, it is a facilitator -- a useful diagnostic tool that can help the practitioner choose an appropriate treatment modality and accelerate various primary treatment strategies.

The second edition of this remarkable work (first published 25 years ago) is written to


What is hypnosis? Despite widespread misconceptions, hypnosis is not a treatment in itself; instead, it is a facilitator -- a useful diagnostic tool that can help the practitioner choose an appropriate treatment modality and accelerate various primary treatment strategies.

The second edition of this remarkable work (first published 25 years ago) is written to provide both beginning and seasoned practitioners with a brief, disciplined technique for mobilizing and learning from an individual's capacity to concentrate. Putting to rest both exaggerated fears about hypnosis and overblown statements of its efficacy, this compelling volume brings scientific discipline to a systematic exploration of the clinical uses and limitations of hypnosis.

The challenge was to develop a clinical measurement that could transform a fascinating amalgam of anecdotes, speculations, clinical intuitions and observations, and laboratory advances into a more fruitful and systematic body of information. Thus was born the authors' Hypnotic Induction Profile (HIP), a crucial 10-minute clinical assessment procedure that relates the spectrum of hypnotizability to personality style, psychopathology, and treatment outcome.

Structured to reflect the flow of a typical evaluation and treatment session and highlighted by case examples throughout, this remarkable synthesis describes how to use the HIP, reviews relevant literature, and details principles and short- and long-term treatment strategies for smoking control; eating disorders; anxiety, concentration, and insomnia; phobias; pain control; psychosomatic disorders and conversion symptoms; trichotillomania; stuttering; and acute and posttraumatic stress disorders and dissociation. Meticulously referenced and indexed, this in-depth work concludes with an appendix on the interpretation and standardization of the HIP.This unique work stands out in the literature because • It is written both as an introduction for practitioners new to hypnosis and as an in-depth guide for practitioners with wide experience in hypnosis.• Unlike current clinical works, it emphasizes the importance of performing a systematic assessment of hypnotizability to identify, measure, and utilize a given patient's optimal therapeutic potential -- a process that, until now, has been relegated to clinical intuition.• It describes human behavior phenomenologically as it relates to hypnosis in a probable rather than an absolute fashion.• It reviews only specific portions of the literature that are particularly relevant to the important themes presented by the authors. Wherever possible, the authors apply statistical methods to test their hypotheses.

The realm of scientific investigation encompassing hypnosis and psychological dysfunction is comparatively new. This exceptional volume, with its profusion of systematic data, will spark controversy and interest among scientific students of hypnosis everywhere, from psychiatrists, psychologists, and psychoanalysts to physicians, dentists, and other interested clinicians.

Editorial Reviews

4 Stars! from Doody
Doody's Review Service
Reviewer: Regina Rosa Lopez, MD (University of Illinois at Chicago College of Medicine)
Description: This overview of hypnosis dispels myths and emphasizes a systematic assessment of hypnotizability. The Hypnotic Induction Profile, which is thoroughly described, is related to personality style, psychopathology, and treatment outcome. The book also reviews the literature on hypnosis and presents treatment strategies for its use in multiple disorders. The book is a necessary update to the first edition, published in 1978.
Purpose: The purpose is to serve as an introduction for those new to the subject of hypnosis or to give new perspectives to those with experience. These worthy objectives are met.
Audience: The targeted audience are psychiatrists, psychologists, psychotherapists, physicians, and other clinicians interested in learning hypnosis. The author is a credible authority.
Features: The book covers the history of hypnosis, what it is, how it works, the methods used to measure it, and its applicability clinically. It is organized in a manner which makes it easy to follow and is sufficiently detailed which makes it easy to understand. The historical information and the clinical vignettes are unique features. A shortcoming is that it may be too simplistic for experienced therapists.
Assessment: As a novice in this area, I thought the quality of the book was very good. This edition is definitely justified, as a lot has changed in the field since 1978.
Wisconsin Bookwatch

An excellent source, drawing heavily upon systematic data to support its investigation into the beneficial uses of hypnosis in the treatment of psychological dysfunction, and recommended for scientific students of hypnosis, particularly those interested in applying it to mental health practices.


This is the second edition of Trance and Treatment, written by the father and son leaders of the field and serving as a virtual bible of hypnosis... [T]hey cover the ins and outs of hypnosis, presenting theories, concepts, and procedures in a cogent fashion while backing up their ideas with research and findings, both their own and that of others.

Product Details

American Psychiatric Publishing, Incorporated
Publication date:
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
File size:
5 MB
Age Range:
18 Years

What People are Saying About This

Auke Tellegen

In this second edition of Trance and Treatment, the Spiegels, drawing on their combined clinical experiences and on relevant research literature, have revisited and updated their integrative framework for understanding hypnosis. They continue to stress the importance of individual differences in hypnotic responsiveness as assessed through their well-known Hypnotic Induction Profile. In numerous and remarkably wide-ranging clinical examples they illustrate their reliance on hypnotic ritual as the transactional context for personological and diagnostic assessments and for accordingly tailored interventions. Trance and Treatment is a richly documented exposition of today's arguably most encompassing and challenging trance-based model of hypnosis and hypnotic intervention.

Meet the Author

Herbert Spiegel, M.D., is Clinical Professor of Psychiatry (Emeritus) at Columbia University, College of Physicians&Surgeons, where he directed the postgraduate course in hypnosis from 1960 to 1982. Currently at Columbia, he is Special Lecturer in Psychiatry and in private practice in New York City.

David Spiegel, M.D., is the Jack, Lulu and Sam Willson Professor in the School of Medicine, Associate Chair of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, and Medical Director of the Center for Integrative Medicine at Stanford University Medical Center.

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