Do patients with globus sensation respond to hypnotically assisted relaxation therapy? A case series report

J. L. Kiebles*, M. A. Kwiatek, J. E. Pandolfino, P. J. Kahrilas, L. Keefer

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

28 Scopus citations

Abstract

Globus sensation is a bothersome and difficult symptom to treat. The aims of this study were to evaluate the acceptability and utility of hypnotically-assisted relaxation (HAR) in decreasing the perception of globus sensation and the effect of HAR on interdeglutitive upper esophageal sphincter (UES) pressure. Sixteen subjects with persistent globus sensation unresponsive to therapy for reflux disease and with normal esophageal/laryngeal imaging studies were invited to participate in a 7-session clinical protocol. Before and after HAR, subjects completed standard questionnaires including the esophageal symptoms questionnaire. High-resolution manometric assessment of respiratory augmentation and average resting UES pressure were assessed before and after HAR. Ten of the 16 subjects agreed to participate in the protocol. All participants were women with median age 51.5 (range 30-72 years). The participants found HAR acceptable and completed the entire 7-session trial. Globus symptom severity varied widely pre-treatment (median = 52.5, range 16-72), and 9 of 10 subjects reported a reduction in globus symptomatology following treatment (median = 14.0, range 3-19; P = .007). Only 1 subject exhibited abnormal respiratory augmentation of UES pressure (>27 mm Hg) prior to treatment and was normal following treatment (9.9 mm Hg). Resting UES pressure was normal in all subjects (<118 mm Hg). Group respiratory augmentation and average resting UES pressure were unaffected by HAR (P = .48, .89). This case series suggests that HAR can provide a substantial improvement in globus sensation irrespective of cause. UES function was unaffected. We suggest that HAR therapy is an acceptable and useful intervention for patients with globus sensation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)545-553
Number of pages9
JournalDiseases of the Esophagus
Volume23
Issue number7
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 1 2010

Keywords

  • Globus sensation
  • Hypnosis
  • Relaxation
  • Upper esophageal sphincter

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Gastroenterology

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