Hypnosis for Smoking Relapse Prevention: A Randomized Trial

Am J Clin Hypn. 2017 Oct;60(2):159-171. doi: 10.1080/00029157.2016.1261678.


The purpose of this study was to determine whether hypnosis would be more effective than standard behavioral counseling in helping smokers to remain abstinent. A total of 140 current smokers were enrolled in a randomized controlled smoking cessation trial at an urban Veterans Affairs medical center. Participants (n = 102) who were able to quit for at least 3 days received either a hypnosis or behavioral relapse prevention intervention. Both relapse prevention interventions consisted of two 60 min face-to-face sessions and four 20 min follow-up phone calls (two phone calls per week). At 26 weeks, the validate\d point-prevalence quit rate was 35% for the hypnosis group and 42% for the behavioral counseling group (relative risk = 0.85; 95% confidence interval: 0.52-1.40). At 52 weeks, the validated quit rate was 29% for the hypnosis group and 28% for the behavioral group (relative risk = 1.03; 95% confidence interval: 0.56-1.91). It was concluded that hypnosis warrants further investigation as an intervention for facilitating maintenance of quitting.

Keywords: clinical trial; hypnosis; nicotine dependence; relapse prevention; smoking cessation; tobacco use.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Hypnosis / methods*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Secondary Prevention / methods*
  • Smoking Cessation / methods*
  • Smoking Prevention / methods*