BBC News released an article: ” Hypnosis has ‘real’ brain
effect.”

Here are some excerpts:

[begin excerpts]

Hypnosis has a “very real” effect that can be picked up on brain scans,
say Hull University researchers.

An imaging study of hypnotised participants showed decreased activity in
the parts of the brain linked with daydreaming or letting the mind wander.

The same brain patterns were absent in people who had the tests but who
were not susceptible to being hypnotised.

One psychologist said the study backed the theory that hypnosis “primes”
the brain to be open to suggestion.

<snip>

It is not the first time researchers have tried to use imaging studies
to monitor brain activity in people under hypnosis.

But the Hull team said these had been done while people had been asked
to carry out tasks, so it was not clear whether the changes in the brain
were due to the act of doing the task or an effect of hypnosis.

<snip>

In the “highly suggestible” group there was decreased activity in the
part of the brain involved in daydreaming or letting the mind wander –
also known as the “default mode” network.

One suggestion of how hypnosis works, supported by the results, is that
shutting off this activity leaves the brain free to concentrate on other
tasks.

Study leader Dr William McGeown, a lecturer in the department of
psychology, said the results were unequivocal because they only occurred
in the highly suggestible subjects.

“This shows that the changes were due to hypnosis and not just simple
relaxation.

“Our study shows hypnosis is real.”

[end excerpts]

The article is online at:
<http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/health/8359170.stm>

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