Belgian researchers from the University of Antwerp, the University of Brussels and Artevelde University, Ghent, performed a review of studies investigating the effects of different kinds of relaxation therapy on autonomic function, pain, fatigue and daily functioning of patients with chronic fatigue syndrome or fibromyalgia.
The electronic databases PubMed and Web of Science were searched. Studies were assessed for their risk of bias and relevant information regarding relaxation was extracted.
Thirteen randomized clinical trials of sufficient quality were included, resulting in a total of 650 fibromyalgia patients (11 studies) and 88 chronic fatigue syndrome patients (3 studies).
Researchers from the Departments of Neurology and Anatomy and Neurobiology at the University of California, Irvine, examined the neural correlates of motor imagery when used in conjunction with movement of the paretic arm after stroke. Subjects were 7 patients in the chronic phase of stroke recovery (median (range): age: 58 years (37-73); time post-stroke: 9 months (4-42); upper extremity Fugl-Meyer motor score: 48 (36-64)).
Participants actively moved the paretic/right arm under two conditions while undergoing functional magnetic resonance imaging. In the motor condition, pronation/supination movements were made in response to a visual cue. In the motor + imagery condition, the same movements were performed in response to a visual cue but the participants were instructed to imagine opening and closing a doorknob during performance of the movement.
Researchers from University Hospitals of Geneva in Switzerland evaluated the use of an online, guided, self-administered treatment program for bulimia nervosa (BN), and to determine predictors of outcome.
Data were collected in four European countries where the program was simultaneously used. One hundred and twenty-seven female patients with bulimia nervosa (mean age of 24.7 years) participated in a 4-month intervention, using a CBT based online-guided self-help program. Contact during the treatment period included weekly e-mails with a coach.
Measures included the Eating Disorders Inventory-2 (EDI-2) and the Symptom Check List-Revised (SCL-90R).
Researchers from University Bochum in Germany studied 41 patients with an eating disorder who participated in a body image group therapy program, to examine the relationship between changes in dysfunctional body and self perceptions and their eating disorder behavior.
Dysfunctional cognitions were assessed with the 'Eating Disorder Cognition Questionnaire', both before and after treatment. Eating disorder psychopathology was also assessed.
Researchers from Syracuse University looked at how to reduce the adrenergized alarm state experienced by veterans with PTSD, a hypothalamic pituitary axis dysfunction that is reflected in measurable cortisol output.
Knowing that many veterans with PTSD are hesitant to engage in distressing, triggering trauma-focused exposure treatments, these investigators explored the impact that non-exposure-based treatments, briefer in duration might have.
One such promising approach is an abbreviated, Primary Care, 4-week, brief Mindfulness Program (PCbMP).
This research was to see if the positive effects that were attained immediately after, were sustained after six months
Researchers from Tilburg University in The Netherlands conducted a 6-month follow up study of the DiaMind trial, which showed beneficial immediate effects of mindfulness-based cognitive therapy (MBCT) on emotional distress, but not on diabetes distress nor on HbA1c.
This research was to see if the positive effects that were attained immediately after, were sustained after six months.
In the DiaMind trial, 139 outpatients with diabetes (type-I or type-II) and a lowered level of emotional well-being were randomized into MBCT (n=70) or a waiting list with treatment as usual (TAU: n=69).
Researchers from Utah State University performed a meta-analysis to examine the impact of Acceptance & Commitment Therapy (ACT) – a treatment protocol that's a kind of marriage between mindfulness meditation and cognitive behavioral therapy - on anxiety disorders and OCD spectrum disorders.
The analysis looked at the relationship between psychological flexibility, as measured by versions of the Acceptance and Action Questionnaire (AAQ and AAQ-II) and measures of anxiety.
Results showed positive and significant relationships between the AAQ and general measures of anxiety, as well as disorder specific measures. Additionally, all outcome data to date on ACT for anxiety and OCD spectrum disorders were reviewed, as were data on mediation and moderation within ACT.
Researchers from Stanford University, the University of New Mexico and New York University conducted a randomized, controlled trial to evaluate 6-month outcomes from a skills-based intervention designed to reduce symptoms of posttraumatic stress disorder, anxiety, and depression in mothers of preterm infants.
One hundred five mothers of preterm infants were randomly assigned to (1) a 6- or 9-session intervention based on principles of trauma-focused cognitive behavior therapy with infant redefinition or (2) a 1-session active comparison intervention based on education about the NICU and parenting of the premature infant.
Outcome measures included the Davidson Trauma Scale, the Beck Depression Inventory II, and the Beck Anxiety Inventory. Participants were assessed at baseline, 4 to 5 weeks after birth, and 6 months after the birth of the premature infant.
Investigators from University College in Dublin, Ireland, evaluated the effectiveness of the computerized Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (cCBT) program, MoodGYM, for the reduction in symptoms of general psychological distress (the primary outcome), depression, anxiety, stress, and impaired daily functioning.
Participants for this randomized controlled trial, with a waiting list control condition, were 149 public mental health service users (aged 18-61 [M = 35.3 years; SD = 10.3]) waiting for interventions.
Researchers from the University of Almeria and Poniente Hospital in Almeria, Spain, evaluated the effects of guided imagery as a nursing intervention for pain management and depression in patients diagnosed with fibromyalgia.
In this 8-week, quasi-experimental study, patients diagnosed with fibromyalgia, aged 18 to 70 years (n = 60), were randomly assigned to a guided imagery group (n = 30) or a control group (n = 30).
The pain outcomes were measured by the McGill Pain Questionnaire long form (MPQ-LF) and the Visual Analogue Scale (VAS). Depression was measured by the Beck Depression Inventory and the VAS for depression. Scores were examined at baseline, post-intervention (4th week), and at the end of the study (8th week).