Navigation Links
Mindfulness therapy might help veterans with combat-related post-traumatic stress disorder
Date:4/17/2013

ANN ARBOR, Mich. Mindfulness exercises that include meditation, stretching, and acceptance of thoughts and emotions might help veterans with combat-related post-traumatic stress disorder find relief from their symptoms.

A new collaborative study from the University of Michigan Health System and the VA Ann Arbor Healthcare System shows that veterans with PTSD who completed an 8-week mindfulness-based group treatment plan showed a significant reduction in symptoms as compared to patients who underwent treatment as normal.

Mindfulness-based cognitive therapy, or MBCT, combines the practice of cognitive therapy with the meditative approach of mindfulness that stresses an increased awareness of all thoughts and emotions.

Previous research has shown stress reduction classes that use mindfulness meditation have been beneficial to people with a history of trauma exposure -- including veterans, civilians with war-related trauma and adults with a history of childhood sexual abuse but the new study is the first to examine the effect of mindfulness-based psychotherapy for PTSD with veterans in a PTSD clinic.

The study was published online today in Depression and Anxiety.

"The results of our trial are encouraging for veterans trying to find help for PTSD," says Anthony P. King, Ph.D., the study's lead author and research assistant professor in the U-M Department of Psychiatry, who performed the study in collaboration with psychologists at the VA Ann Arbor Healthcare System. "Mindfulness techniques seemed to lead to a reduction in symptoms and might be a potentially effective novel therapeutic approach to PTSD and trauma-related conditions."

Veterans in the mindfulness treatment groups participated in in-class exercises such as mindful eating, in which they focus on sensations associated with eating very slowly; "body scanning," an exercise where patients focus on physical sensations in individual parts of the body, paying special attention to pain and tension; mindful movement and stretching; and "mindfulness meditation" including focusing on the breath and emotions. The participants were also instructed to practice mindfulness at home through audio-recorded exercises and during the day while doing activities such as walking, eating and showering.

After eight weeks of treatment, 73 percent of patients in the mindfulness group displayed meaningful improvement compared to 33 percent in the treatment-as- usual groups.

King says the most noticeable area of improvement for patients in the mindfulness group was a reduction in avoidance symptoms. One of the main tenets of mindfulness therapy is a sustained focus on thoughts and memories, even ones that might be unpleasant.

"Part of the psychological process of PTSD often includes avoidance and suppression of painful emotions and memories, which allows symptoms of the disorder to continue," King says. "Through the mindfulness intervention, however, we found that many of our patients were able to stop this pattern of avoidance and see an improvement in their symptoms."

Mindfulness techniques also emphasize focus and attention to positive experiences and nonjudgmental acceptance to one's thoughts and emotions. Because of this, the researchers found that the patients in the mindfulness group experienced a decrease in feelings of self-blame and a trend toward decreased perception of the world as a dangerous place.

King says the results of this pilot study are encouraging, but further studies with a larger sample size are needed to fully explore the breadth of mindfulness intervention benefits. He added that the U-M-VA group is currently conducting a larger study including military veterans returning from Iraq and Afghanistan.

"Further studies will help us understand whether mindfulness training is more aptly considered an adjunct option to gold-standard trauma-focused treatments such as prolonged exposure or EMDR, or whether it can function as an intervention in its own right for treating avoidance and other symptoms," he says.

"Either way, mindfulness-based therapies provide a strategy that encourages active engagement for participants, are easy to learn and appear to have significant benefits for veterans with PTSD."


'/>"/>

Contact: Justin Harris
juaha@umich.edu
734-764-2220
University of Michigan Health System
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. Mindfulness from meditation associated with lower stress hormone
2. Mindfulness at school reduces likelihood of depression-related symptoms in adolescents
3. Mindfulness meditation may relieve chronic inflammation
4. Mindfulness meditation reduces loneliness in older adults, Carnegie Mellon study shows
5. Physicians mindfulness skills can improve care for patient and provider
6. From Hydro Med Inc: New Therapy for Tinnitus to be presented April 15. It’s the ability of a Patient to Show their Tinnitus
7. Radiation Therapy May Raise Future Death Risk From Heart Surgery
8. Healthcare Staffing Leader, Aureus Medical Group, to Exhibit at the American Occupational Therapy Association’s 93rd Annual Conference & Expo
9. Electrical Stimulation Could Zap the Need for Physical Therapy Following Knee Replacement
10. Yoga Therapy and Ayurveda Training Offered in 2013 by the California College of Ayurveda in Val Morin, Canada
11. 2-step ovarian cancer immunotherapy made from patients own tumor shows promise
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... June 25, 2016 , ... ... issues and applications at AcademyHealth’s Annual Research Meeting June 26-28, 2016, at the ... several important health care topics including advance care planning, healthcare costs and patient ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... June 25, 2016 , ... As a lifelong Southern Californian, Dr. Omkar Marathe ... from the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA. He trained in Internal Medicine ... his fellowship in hematology/oncology at the UCLA-Olive View-Cedars Sinai program where he had the ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... ... Those who have experienced traumatic events may suffer from a complex set of ... or alcohol abuse, as a coping mechanism. To avoid this pain and suffering, Serenity ... event. , Trauma sufferers tend to feel a range of emotions, from depression, guilt, ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... June 24, 2016 , ... ... now offering micro-osteoperforation for accelerated orthodontic treatment. Dr. Cheng has extensive experience with ... Damon brackets , AcceleDent, and accelerated osteogenic orthodontics. , Micro-osteoperforation is a ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... The Haute Beauty Network, ... M. Weintraub as a prominent plastic surgeon and the network’s newest partner. ... the most handsome men, look naturally attractive. Plastic surgery should be invisible.” He ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/24/2016)...   Pulmatrix, Inc ., (NASDAQ: PULM ... announced today that it was added to the Russell ... comprehensive set of U.S. and global equity indexes on ... milestone for Pulmatrix," said Chief Executive Officer Robert ... progress in developing drugs for crucial unmet medical needs, ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... Any dentist who has made an implant supported ... Many of them do not even offer this as a ... laboratory costs involved. And those who ARE able to offer ... high cost that the majority of today,s patients would not ... Zadeh , founder of Dental Evolutions Inc. and inventor of ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... 23, 2016 Capricor Therapeutics, ... a biotechnology company focused on the discovery, development ... patient enrollment in its ongoing randomized HOPE-Duchenne clinical ... 50% of its 24-patient target. Capricor expects the ... quarter of 2016, and to report top line ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: