Date of Award

Summer 1985

Document Type

Dissertation - Restricted

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)



First Advisor

Kipfmueller, Mark K.

Second Advisor

Urtz, Frank

Third Advisor

A'hearn, Richard


The purpose of this study was to examine the effects of positive and aversive suggestions, measured hypnotic susceptibility, and the use of a booster session on smoking cessation procedure. when combined with a hypnotic treatment Two hundred and four smokers who responded to a newspaper advertisement, flyer, or radio announcement offering a free "Stop Smoking Clinic" using hypnosis were randomly assigned to one of three treatment conditions. The three treatment conditions were positive hypnotic suggestion, aversive hypnotic suggestion, and attention-placebo condition. Subjects were divided into groups of high or low hypnotic susceptibility as determined by scores on the Harvard Scale of Group Susceptibility and were assigned to either a booster or no-boostet condition. All subjects attended four group hypnosis sessions during a two-week period. Half the subjects received a booster session one month after completion of the fourth session. Al l hypnosis sessions were automated on cassette tape. All subjects received the same hypnotic inductions, deepening procedures, ego-strengthening suggestions and training in self- hypnosis. The only difference in the treatment conditions were specific suggestions regarding smoking cessation. The dependent measure was the subject's smoking status at a two-month follow-up period. Treatment success was defined as total abstinence from smoking at the time each subject completed the two-month follow-up questionnaire. Complete data were available for 170 subjects. Analysis of the data revealed no significant differences between treatment groups on the dependent measure at the two-month follow-up. Results indicated that neither aversive abstinence suggestion nor positive rates significantly suggestion different produced from the attention-placebo condition. Furthermore, no significant effects were found regarding the treatment variables of high or low hypnotic susceptibility and booster or no booster sessions. Results are discussed in relation to the previous literature and recommendations for future research are made.



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