Actually, it hasn’t been studied very much.

But here’s what we know so far.

The Cochrane Collaborative found 14 studies worth considering.

  • Five trials of hypnosis in 729 women
  • Three trials of acupuncture in 496 women
  • Two studies using acupressure in 172 women
  • One audio-analgesia study in 24 women
  • One aromatherapy study in 22 women
  • One study of massage in 60 women
  • A relaxation study in 34 women

And the results

  • Acupuncture appeared to decrease the need for pain relief.
  • The researchers also thought that self-hypnosis might be useful, as it lead to decreased requirements for pharmacological analgesia (including epidural analgesia), and the women were more satisfied with their pain management in labor compared to controls.
  • No much in the other studies.

1/21/07 13:02 JR

Hi, I’m JR

John Russo, Jr., PharmD, is president of The MedCom Resource, Inc. Previously, he was senior vice president of medical communications at, a complementary and alternative medicine website.