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A pilot study of mindfulness-based stress reduction for hot flashes.

12 Oct

Researchers from the University of Massachusetts Medical School offered an 8-week mindfulness-based stress reduction (MBSR) program to menopausal women with severe hot flashes and found it reduced discomfort significantly.

Researchers from the University of Massachusetts Medical School in Worcester did a feasibility study to see if participating in a mindfulness-based stress reduction (MBSR) program had any effect on the severity of hot flashes and menopause related quality of life.

Fifteen women volunteers who had reported having at least seven moderate to severe hot flashes a day were recruited to attend eight weekly MBSR classes at the University of Massachusetts Medical School. Participants were assessed for menopause-related quality of life before the beginning and at the conclusion of the MBSR program. The women also kept a daily log of their hot flashes through the course of the program and for 4 weeks following its conclusion.

The study determined that the women''s scores on quality-of-life measures increased significantly, and the median severity of hot flashes decreased 40% over the course of the 11 weeks of the assessment period. The women were also individually interviewed at the completion of their participation, and the results of the interviews were consistent with the results from their daily diaries.

The study concluded that these results provide preliminary positive evidence of the feasibility and efficacy of MBSR in supporting women who are experiencing severe hot flashes, and that the method’s efficacy warrants further investigation.

Citation: Carmody J, Crawford S, Churchill L. A pilot study of mindfulness-based stress reduction for hot flashes. Menopause. 2006 Sep-Oct;13 (5): pages 760-9. This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Belleruth Naparstek

Psychotherapist, author and guided imagery pioneer Belleruth Naparstek is the creator of the popular Health Journeys guided imagery audio series. Her latest book on imagery and posttraumatic stress, Invisible Heroes: Survivors of Trauma and How They Heal (Bantam Dell), won the Spirituality & Health Top 50 Books Award