hypnorelaxation, an alternative to general anesthesia for colonoscopy

It is an alternative to general anesthesia. Department of Gastroenterology CHRU de Nancy Patients are offered a colonoscopy (colon examination) under sedation. It is a method that depends on the voice of a trained nurse, and then on the virtual reality headset that immerses you in a relaxed atmosphere.

“It is a discussion we had with the patient. We explain to him in a clear, fair and appropriate manner the benefits and risks of each method and he will be the sole decision-maker for this treatment.”Dr. Julian Seit, MD, gastroenterologist

Zen garden or snow covered mountain?

This method has been tested since the end of last year when the Covid epidemic monopolized operating rooms. Around 95 examinations under enlightenment It has been performed so far and according to Dr. Seit, 80% of patients are satisfied with this alternative approach.

Nurse Annick Splon’s hand resting on the patient’s arm during the examination © Radio France
Isabelle Baudrillard

Josette, 84, is full of praise. “Colonoscopy, I’ve had them before but I’ve been sleeping. This is my first time this way and I’m feeling great, it’s great!” You just graduated from the exam. A few minutes ago, she was still wearing VR goggles on her face and between the atmospheres available – mountain, beach, diving, woods – she chose to immerse herself in a zen garden.

Create a cocoon around the patient

“Our role is to relax the patient, focus their attention on something other than the gesture, and divert the pain.”Julian Seth explains. Besides Josette, nurse Annick Splon watches. “I, look at hands a lot. People, when they’re not feeling well, hold hands”as you say.

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Dr. Julian Seit, Gastroenterologist
Dr. Julian Seit, Gastroenterologist © Radio France
Isabelle Baudrillard

What are the benefits of hypnosis for the patient? Spend less time in the hospitalAbout an hour instead of half a day under anesthesia and avoid the side effects of general anesthesia, which are not always harmless. Only two hospitals in France use this technique in gastroenterology.

Frank Mccarthy

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