Mindfulness-based interventions ease inflammation in IBD
Mindfulness-based therapies appear to be effective in improving levels of inflammatory biomarkers in patients with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), a recent study has shown.
The study included IBD patients who were randomly assigned to receive mindfulness-based interventions (n=37; mean age, 46.2±10.9 years; 29 females) or standard medical therapy (n=20; mean age, 46.3±11.9 years; 9 females). The intervention involved four internet-based modules and four face-to-face sessions. The primary outcome was the faecal calprotectin concentration.
At baseline, faecal calprotectin levels were comparable between the active intervention and standard therapy groups (198±394 vs 222±242 µg/g). After 6 months of follow-up, concentrations dropped to 128±226 µg/g in the mindfulness-based intervention group and rose to 495±949 µg/ in the standard therapy group. The resulting difference was statistically significant (–367 µg/g, 95 percent confidence interval [CI], –705 to –29; p=0.03).
Levels of C-reactive protein also changed significantly over 6 months. In the mindfulness intervention arm, concentrations jumped from 1.93±2.47 to 2.43±3.05 mg/dL. Those in the standard therapy arm experienced a similar increase but to an almost significantly greater degree (2.46±3.81 to 5.25±7.73 mg/dL; difference, –2.82; 95 percent CI, –5.70 to 0.08; p=0.05).
Changes in cortisol concentrations in the hair remained comparable between treatment arms.
“[F]uture work should be designed to try to verify these findings by evaluating several physiological indices and to increase our knowledge of the biological systems which benefit from mindfulness-based intervention-mediated reductions in stress which can therefore serve as useful biological indicators in these patients,” said researchers.