Hypnosis for childbirth: a retrospective comparative analysis of outcomes in one obstetrician's practice

Am J Clin Hypn. 2007 Oct;50(2):109-19. doi: 10.1080/00029157.2007.10401608.


This exploratory, descriptive study, done retrospectively from perinatal medical records, compared childbirth outcomes in one obstetrician's caseload between 50 women who elected antepartal hypnosis preparation (usually a 5-class series) and 51 who did not. The groups were demographically similar. To achieve similar numbers to the hypnosis group, the control group was randomly selected from the women in the caseload who opted not to take hypnosis preparation, based on characteristics of parity and delivery mode. Prenatal hypnosis preparation resulted in significantly less use of sedatives, analgesia, and regional anesthesia during labor and in higher 1-minute neonatal Apgar scores. Other physiologic and outcome measures did not reveal statistical significance, although some trends were of clinical interest. Well-controlled studies are warranted for clinicians to offer hypnosis more frequently as a pain relief option for childbirth. Additional information provided includes pragmatic, clinical, and cost information about incorporating hypnosis into a physician's practice.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Anesthetics / therapeutic use
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Hypnosis*
  • Obstetrics / methods*
  • Pain / prevention & control
  • Parturition*
  • Practice Patterns, Physicians'*
  • Retrospective Studies


  • Anesthetics