Clinical Hypnosis for Pain Control is a compelling argument for the use of hypnotic analgesia as a viable alternative to psychopharmacological interventions for controlling acute, chronic, and perioperative pain, as well as pain from nonsurgical procedures. Yet clinical hypnosis is not an "alternative" medicine, the author argues; rather, it is an innovative way of using a patient's subconscious resources to distract, dislocate, or reduce pain in a variety of clinical settings—from the ER to the hospital's rehabilitation wing.
As the staff psychologist at the University of Washington Harborview Medical Center's burn center, Dr. Patterson draws on his experiences—and many hypnotic inductions—in helping patients deal with the kind of severe pain involved in treating burn wounds and in other types of acute and chronic pain, such as headaches, fibromyalgia, cancer, and neuropathy.
Written for a general clinical audience—but particularly for pain specialists—Clinical Hypnosis for Pain Control also provides a masterful survey of the different types of pain, as well as a variety of easy-to-follow induction examples (and instructive commentary throughout) for the major types of pain syndromes.
The book is also an excellent resource for students and researchers who want to explore hypnotic analgesia's scientific basis and its growing acceptance as an evidence-based practice, the latter exemplified by the work of psychologist Milton Erickson. In the book's penultimate chapter, Dr. Patterson outlines a groundbreaking approach of combining brief counseling techniques and Ericksonian hypnosis for long-term pain management.