A significant study was published this week by the Journal of the American Medical Association. This study looked at the effectiveness of Mindfulness (MBSR) and CBT versus usual care. This study is important as up till now mindfulness has not been rigorously evaluated for young and middle-aged adults with chronic back pain.

The results show that among adults with chronic low back pain, treatment with MBSR or CBT, compared with usual care, resulted in greater improvement in back pain and functional limitations at 26 weeks, with no significant differences in outcomes between MBSR and CBT. These findings suggest that MBSR may be an effective treatment option for patients with chronic low back pain.

Another recent study published in the Journal of Neuroscience finds that mindfulness meditation training could significantly reduce the need for pain medication. In a tightly controlled experiment, researchers showed that a brief training in mindfulness practice can help the brain to dial down its perception of pain, without using the opiod pathway in the brain often targeted by pain medications.

Conclusive research is vital to support the growth of mindfulness, particularly through institutions such as the NHS and other health organisations. For Breathworks, these academic studies are also important as they support us and provide an external affirmation as we develop and grow our work teaching a form of MBSR modified to specifically help people live with chronic pain and illness.

In this respect, we already have our own ongoing evidence-base and are involved in partnerships with a number of charities, hospitals and universities to conduct on-going research and evaluation of our programmes. If you are interested in discussing research with us please contact Colin Duff: [email protected]