Suggestions in Hypnosis to Aid Pain Education (SHAPE) in People with Chronic Low-Back Pain: A Pilot Feasibility Randomized, Controlled Trial

Brian W. Pulling, Felicity A. Braithwaite, G. Lorimer Moseley, Mark P. Jensen, Anne L.J. Burke, Kathryn L. Collins, Melissa J. Hull, Hannah G. Jones, Allan M. Cyna, Nicki Ferencz, Tasha R. Stanton

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


Chronic low back pain (CLBP) is a debilitating and burdensome condition, and new treatment strategies are needed. This study aimed to evaluate (1) the feasibility of undertaking a controlled clinical trial investigating a novel intervention for people with CLBP: hypnotically reinforced pain science education, and (2) the acceptability of the intervention as rated by participants. A priori feasibility and intervention acceptability criteria were set. Twenty participants with CLBP were recruited and randomized to receive: (1) hypnotically delivered pain science education that utilizes hypnotic suggestions to enhance uptake of pain science concepts; or (2) pain science education with progressive muscle relaxation as an attention control. Twenty participants were recruited, however, not solely from the hospital waitlist as intended; community sampling was required (13 hospital, 7 community). Most criteria were met in the community sample but not the hospital sample. Protocol modifications are needed before progressing to a full scale randomized controlled trial for hypnotically reinforced pain science education. Improvements in relevant secondary outcomes paired with moderate-high treatment acceptability ratings are promising.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)251-276
Number of pages26
JournalInternational Journal of Clinical and Experimental Hypnosis
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished or Issued - 2022
Externally publishedYes


  • Adjunctive
  • feasibility
  • hypnosis
  • low back pain
  • pain science education

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Complementary and Manual Therapy
  • Clinical Psychology

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