I re-hypnotised her to switch that part of her body back on, and within a couple of months she was pregnant and now has twins.Another area in which hypnosis works is pain control.We can all remember concentrating desperately hard on, say, putting up a shelf.

Patricia was a high-flying business executive who had put off having a child for many years because her career came first.

Now the biological clock had clicked in and she desperately wanted a baby, but she could not get pregnant.

There was no physical reason for her infertility, and I soon came to realise that she had simply done a fine job of selfhypnosis, programming her body to reject pregnancy.

He added that there were 'tremendous medical implications' and envisaged people being able to manage their own pain and anxiety.

Well, I am relieved to know that the people I have hypnotised on stage down the years were not just putting it on to please me and the audience.

And, more importantly, that those I have cured of fears and phobias were genuinely cured.I am delighted that this research confirms what professional hypnotists, such as myself, who have been successfully using the technique for medical purposes, have known all along - hypnotism has a genuine effect on the functioning of the mind, as well as the body. Hypnotism really does work - and it has an impact on the brain which can be measured scientifically, according to one of America's leading psychiatrists.David Spiegel, from Stanford University, told the prestigious American Association for the Advancement of Science that he had scanned the brains of volunteers who were told they were looking at coloured objects when, in fact, they were black and white.A scan showing areas of the brain used to register colour highlighted increased blood flow, indicating that the volunteers genuinely 'saw' colours, as they had been told they would.'This is scientific evidence that something happens in the brain when people are hypnotised that doesn't happen ordinarily,' Mr Spiegel told delegates.