Can mindfulness help patients stay in treatment?

MLI Fellow Willoughby Britton is one of the principal investigators who will research this question as part of a five-year study, funded by a new $4.7 million grant from the National Institutes of Health. A number of other researchers from the MLI community will be co-investigators, including: Cathy Kerr, Jared Lindahl, Sara Lazar, Gaelle Desbordes, Dave Vago, Zev Schuman-Olivier, Liz Hoge, Jud Brewer, and more.

The study will proceed in two phases, centered at Brown University where Britton is an assistant professor in Psychiatry and Human Behavior at the Alpert Medical School. The first phase involves a systematic review of data from dozens of previous studies to see if mindfulness interventions can influence patients’ self-regulation related to medical regimen adherence. Importantly, such an analysis will combine data from over 2,000 participants, and will thus have enough statistical power to show whether interventions worked consistently or not. The second phase will involve four randomized controlled trials (at Brown, Harvard University, and University of Massachusetts – Worcester) to assess the impact of mindfulness interventions on measures of medically recommended lifestyle changes, including treatments for reducing blood pressure and dietary changes. Click here for more information.

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