A man, aged 45, was confined to his bed with acute sciatica for several weeks, and for five or six months following had used crutches, unable to bear his weight on the affected side. His physician had invited some of his professional friends to witness the treatment of this case.

The history of the case, the time that had elapsed, the rational therapeutic measures, etc., that had been employed, together with the symptoms at hand, convinced me that the severe pain, insomnia, and functional disturbances were unduly aggravated by the prolonged attention that had been given to them by the patient, which had created sense impressions that reproduced themselves in the peculiar mental state exhibited by him."

There is always a tendency for the nervous system to retain an impression after the cause which gave it birth has passed away. This proved to be true in this case of sciatica. The patient was hypnotized, and suggestions were given to relieve his pain, to quiet nervousness, restore sleep, and re-establish the function of the disabled limb. The man, while in the hypnotic state, was persuaded to use the limb, and, when awakened, stamped his foot on the floor, walked, jumped, hopped on the affected limb, and then turned in all seriousness to the physician and said he was easy for the first time in five months. After seeing him three more times on each of the following days successively, he went to his work. This man was a carpenter and appeared in no sense to belong to the hysterical type, yet this was a psychoneurotic condition.