Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)




The purpose of the study was to identify North Dakota certified registered nurse anesthetists’ (CRNAs) attitudes and perceptions of hypnosis and if they believe it would be realistic to use hypnosis in the surgical setting. A voluntary descriptive, cross sectional study design was used to obtain accurate and current information. The population of the study consisted of all the North Dakota CRNAs, who v/ere 2005-2006 members of the NDANA (North Dakota Association of Nurse Anesthetists); more than 90% of North Dakota CRNAs are members of NDANA. A current list of NDANA CRNAs was obtained (N=182). All current members were invited to participate in the study.

A questionnaire was mailed after proper IRB approval was obtained. The questionnaire was developed by the researcher based on information from the literature reviewed regarding hypnosis. The questionnaire was designed utilizing demographic information obtained in a confidential manner by close ended and checklist questions. Data collection was through the federal mail. The questionnaires were coded, obtainable only by the researcher, stored in a locked cabinet and will be destroyed after three years.

Of the 182 members sent surveys, 119 participated (65.4%). Descriptive studies indicated that most believe that hypnosis would be a useful adjunct to anesthesia (65.5%). Surprisingly, only 1 5 members (12.6%) stated that they had some exposure to hypnosis and only 18 members (15.1%) stated they had any form of education on hypnosis.

The review of literature notes that hypnosis is not widely utilized in the surgical setting. Hypnosis has been around for centuries; its’ popular uses consist of pain control, pregnancy, relaxation and anxiety. Hypnosis is not widely used and the results revealed that the use of hypnosis by North Dakota CRNA’s is almost not existent. The study defined North Dakota CRNA’s would utilize hypnosis if educated; the respondents attitudes against the use of hypnosis in the surgical setting were mainly due to time constraints (58%) and lack of knowledge and training (77.3%). Examination of the use of hypnosis, the barriers and attitudes on hypnosis has given the researcher information on the utilization of hypnosis in the surgical setting. To encourage research on hypnosis, education of health providers on alternative/complementary methods, and informing the patients of these therapies is recommended by the researcher to advance the nursing profession.