Naturalistic Hypnosis in Conversive Disorders Treatment I

Patient with functional neurological symptoms seems to have lost the ability and capacity to regulate affect, drive control and experience, and the ability to control their own actions and decisions. (Voon et al., 2010).

Conversion symptoms do not imply a full and active inhibition of motor circuits. They seem associated with selective activation of certain brain regions involved in motor representation and emotional process. Loss of a suitable contrast for proprioceptive feedback, leads to the perception that the subject does not “auto – generate” the movement, which is outside its control. The apparent disorders’ involuntariness (Voon et al., 2010) may be the origin and explanation to the difficult understanding and acceptance of this population, biased and stigmatized by society, including staff attending them.

Activation of “symptom”, either clinically diagnosed, or simulated using hypnosis, is associated with an increased activity of the prefrontal cortex. This suggests the involvement of the executive system in both automatic and voluntary, crucial, both in patients with functional neurological symptoms like cognitive processing in hypnosis.


Hypnosis as a tool for change through interpersonal influence.

Most professionals from research and training put the change in the models and their associated techniques. However, research findings suggest that customers – not models – should organize the treatment process. In particular the formal evaluation and use the own perceptions, experiences and ideas about change. We know that the treatment system depends heavily on customer feedback.

We assume the idea that patients with functional neurological symptoms handle certain situations (traumatic), so that their emotional response is reflected in a physiological reaction that gives rise to symptoms or conversion symptoms.

The interest of several professional and research programs have been aimed at uncovering the cognitive and neural mechanisms that produce involuntary inhibition of voluntary movements (Bell et al, 2011;. Broome, 2004,. Cojan et al, 2009a; Cojan et al ., 2009b; Demertzi et al, 2011;. Edwards et al, 2012a;. Edwards et al, 2012b, Felleman & van Essen, 1991;. Friston, 2010; Friston, 2012, Harvey et al, 2006;. going Beilen et al., 2011). Others have targeted treatment approaches with emphasis on the problem (LaFrance, 2009,. Moene et al, 2003; Schönfeldt-Lecuona, 2003, Sharpe et al., 2011).

The prejudices of the affected population to health professionals increases when the intervention is associated to a rigid model which excludes its own perception of the disorder and theorize without achieving afford it. This perspective, necessary and essential, get a simple, fast and flexible response that fits perfectly with the naturalistic view of hypnosis.

Camilo Loriedo, professor Sapienza (University of Rome) has developed and refined a hypnotic ultra-brief intervention based on the naturalistic model (Ericksonian) hypnosis. This approach led to the client and informed by the results, can work in a way that matches the way that most patients prefer to see themselves, and how they usually work (Miller, 2004). The approach is focused to symptom resolution. The intervention invites patients to become participants in the treatment process.


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