Patterns of Mind-Body Therapies in Adults with Common Neurological ConditionsErwin Wells R.a · Phillips R.S.b · McCarthy E.P.b
aDepartment of Neurology and bDivision of General Medicine and Primary Care, Department of Medicine, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Mass., USA
Rebecca Erwin Wells, MD
Department of Neurology
Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Harvard Medical School
330 Brookline Avenue, Boston, MA 02215 (USA)
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Background: Over 40% of adults with common neurological conditions use complementary and alternative medicine, and mind-body therapies are the most commonly used form. Our objective was to describe mind-body use in adults with common neurological conditions. Methods: We compared mind-body use between adults with and without common neurological conditions (regular headaches, migraines, back pain with sciatica, strokes, dementia, seizures or memory loss) using the 2007 National Health Interview Survey of 23,393 sampled American adults. Results: Adults with common neurological conditions used mind-body therapies more frequently than those without (24.5 vs. 16.6%, p < 0.0001); differences persisted after adjustment. Deep breathing exercises, meditation and yoga were used most frequently. Nearly 70% of the adults with common neurological conditions did not discuss their mind-body use with their health care provider. Those with neurological conditions used mind-body therapies more than those without these conditions because of provider recommendation (26 vs. 13%) or because conventional treatments were perceived ineffective (12 vs. 4%) or too costly (7 vs. 2%), respectively. Conclusions: Mind-body therapies are used more frequently among adults with common neurological conditions, more often when conventional treatments were perceived ineffective. More research is warranted on the efficacy of mind-body use for common neurological conditions.
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