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David Spiegel, MD
David Spiegel, MD

    Dr. David Spiegel is the Willson Professor in the school of medicine and the associate chair of the department of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at Stanford University School of Medicine. Dr. Spiegel completed his medical degree at Harvard Medical School, his residency at Massachusetts Health Center and a fellowship in Laboratory and Community Psychiatry also at Harvard Medical School.

    Dr. Spiegel's research interests involve stress and health: cognitive control over somatic functions, including cancer progression, the response to traumatic stress, and the perception of pain and anxiety. He is currently conducting a large scale study of the relationships among sleep disturbance, diurnal stress hormone patterns, and breast cancer survival, sponsored by the National Cancer Institute. This work is based upon earlier evidence from his laboratory that loss of circadian variation in cortisol, indicative of HPA dysfunction, predicts early mortality with breast cancer.

    Dr. Spiegel is also continuing study of the relationship between the acute response to trauma, including dissociative symptoms, and the development of post-traumatic stress disorder. He is also evaluating various methods of treating these symptoms.

    Dr. Spiegel is carrying out studies of the neurophysiological components of hypnosis by studying brain correlates of hypnotic perceptual alteration, using PET, fMRI and diffusion tensor imaging. His research program is designed to examine neurophysiological and peripheral mechanisms through which psychological and social support may influence physical health.

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