Hypnosis, trance and suggestion: evidence from neuroimaging

David A. Oakley

in The Oxford Handbook of Hypnosis

Published in print March 2008 | ISBN: 9780198570097
Published online September 2012 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Library of Psychology

Hypnosis, trance and suggestion: evidence from neuroimaging


This article reviews recent studies that have involved one or other of two recently developed brain scanning techniques for detecting and displaying images of changes in regional cerebral blood flow (rCBF) via either positron emission tomography (PET) or, more recently, functional magnetic resonance imagery (fMRI; Ray and Oathes, 2003). It explains that the variations in rCBF detected in the neuroimaging techniques are known to correlate with changes in brain metabolism, which in turn are related to local neuronal activity. They consequently provide a means of identifying which brain areas are active during the execution of any given task or mental activity. This article further explains that PET and fMRI offer the opportunity to provide an objective means of validating subjective reports in the research and also to explore the brain processes that underlie hypnosis and of the hypnotic phenomena in question.

Keywords: neuroimaging; positron emission tomography; functional magnetic resonance imagery; regional cerebral blood flow; brain metabolism

Article.  19229 words. 

Subjects: Psychology ; Neuropsychology

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