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No. 18: Nov-Dec 1981

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Warts on demand?

Warts can often, but not always, be cured by hypnosis or suggestion. The medical literature is emphatic on this point. Warts can, in fact, be banished from one side of the body, leaving those on the other side intact, if the hypnotist suggests such asymmetry! What has been lacking in the psychosomatic story, according to Gravitz, is evidence that warts can also be produced by suggestion. Evidently modern psychologists have been content with curing warts, for Gravitz had to go all the way back to 1924 to find accounts of warts being induced by suggestion. This scientific neglect of the supply side of wart economics is unfortunate in the view of Gravitz, because here is a mild affliction involving both a virus and psychology that can be studied easily. The knowledge gained might be applicable to some cancers, which also seem to involve viruses and psychology.

(Gravitz, Melvin A.; "The Production of Warts by Suggestion as a Cultural Phenomenon," American Journal of Clinical Hypnosis, 23:281, 1981.)

Comment. The mysterious spontaneous remission of some cancers may have psychosomatic overtones.

From Science Frontiers #18, NOV-DEC 1981. 1981-2000 William R. Corliss

Science Frontiers Sourcebook Project Reviewed in:


  • "A sourcebook of unexplained phenomena is therefore a valuable addition to a collection of scientific literature. William R. Corliss has provided this in the past with his source books of scientific anomalies in several subjects, and now he has provided it for astronomy. He has done an excellent job of collecting and editing a large amount of material, taken in part from scientific journals and in part from scientific reporting in the popular or semi-scientific press." -- "The Mysterious Universe: A Handbook of Astronomical Anomalies", reviwed by Thomas Gold, Cornell University, in Icarus, vol.41, 1980

  • "An interesting, systematic presentation of unusual weather [..] This book is recommended for a general audience" --"Corliss, William R., Tornados, Dark Days, Anomalous Precipitation, and Related Weather Phenomena, Sourcebook Project, 1983.", revieweed in Choice, September 1983
  • "..the science is necessarily somewhat speculative, but Corliss's symthesis is based on reputable sources." -- "Corliss, William R. (Compiler). Lightning, Auroras, Nocturnal Lights, and Related Luminous Phenomena" reviwed by Joseph M. Moran, Univ. of Wisconsin in Science Books and Films, Sep/Oct 1983

  • "Before opening the book, I set certain standards that a volume which treads into dangerous grounds grounds like this must meet. The author scrupulously met, or even exceeded those standards. Each phenomenon is exhaustively documented, with references to scientific journals [..] and extensive quotations" -- "Book Review: The moon and planets: a catalog of astronomical anomalies", The Sourcebook Project, 1985., Corliss, W. R., Journal of the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada, Vol. 81, no. 1 (1987), p. 24., 02/1987