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Olafur S. Palsson, Psy.D. | Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology

Olafur S. Palsson, Psy.D.

Emeritus Professor of Medicine

Contact Information


130 Mason Farm Road
Chapel Hill, NC 27599


Olafur S. Palsson, Psy.D.

Emeritus Professor of Medicine


Dr. Palsson is a clinical psychologist and health researcher with a long-standing interest in the relationship between mind and body in the determination of health and illness. His current research interests include investigation of the psychological and physiological aspects of GI disorders and symptoms, development of questionnaires to for GI and mind-body medicine research, and the use of psychological treatments for IBS and other functional GI disorders. Additionally, he investigates predictors of therapeutic responses to clinical hypnosis and other psychological interventions, and the role of interplay between conscious and non-conscious mental functions in creativity, health problems, and anomalous experiences. Dr. Palsson is an internationally recognized expert in the use of hypnosis for gastrointestinal disorders. He developed a unique standardized hypnosis treatment protocol for treating irritable bowel syndrome, which has been tested in a number of published studies and is used by hundreds of clinicians throughout the U.S. and in several other countries. He has also trained numerous healthcare professionals across the U.S. in the use of hypnosis for medical problems. Dr. Palsson has received several national and international awards for this empirical work in clinical hypnosis. Dr. Palsson has a long-standing interest in the use of Internet applications to enhance health research, and has extensive experience in Internet software programming. He has played a lead role in several large-scale Internet-mediated studies of symptoms and health-related factors in patient groups and the general population worldwide. Dr. Palsson is also a co-inventor of three patented mind-body technologies that he created in collaboration with scientists at the NASA Langley Research Center in Virginia. Dr. Palsson has authored more than 150 scientific papers published in medical and psychology journals, as well as numerous book chapters in edited books and a large number of published research abstracts.

  • Undergraduate

    University of North Carolina, Greensboro

  • Medical School

    Eastern Virginia Medical School, Norfolk, Virginia

  • Fellowship

    University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill