Mind-Body Interventions in Late-Life Mental Illnesses and Cognitive Disorders: A Narrative Review.

Author: Vasudev A1, Torres-Platas SG2, Kerfoot K1, Potes A3, Therriault J4, Gifuni A4, Segal M3, Looper KJ3, Nair V4, Lavretsky H5, Rej S6
Author Information:
1Division of Geriatric Psychiatry (AV, KK), Department of Psychiatry, Western University, London, ON.
2the Geri-PARTy Research Group (SGT, AP, MS, KJL, SR), Department of Psychiatry, Jewish General Hospital, Montréal. Electronic address: susana.torresplatas@mail.mcgill.ca.
3the Geri-PARTy Research Group (SGT, AP, MS, KJL, SR), Department of Psychiatry, Jewish General Hospital, Montréal.
4the Douglas Mental Health University Institute (JT, AG, VN, SR), Montréal.
5Department of Psychiatry (HL), University of California, Los Angeles, Los Angeles.
6the Geri-PARTy Research Group (SGT, AP, MS, KJL, SR), Department of Psychiatry, Jewish General Hospital, Montréal; the Douglas Mental Health University Institute (JT, AG, VN, SR), Montréal.
Conference/Journal: Am J Geriatr Psychiatry.
Date published: 2018 Nov 3
Other: Pages: S1064-7481(18)30541-4 , Special Notes: doi: 10.1016/j.jagp.2018.10.020. [Epub ahead of print] , Word Count: 260


BACKGROUND: Current pharmacological treatments and psychotherapeutic approaches often have adverse effects or ineffective in late-life cognitive and mental illnesses. Mind-body interventions offer a holistic approach and are of interest because of potential patient acceptability and scalability.

OBJECTIVE: To synthesize current evidence on mind-body interventions in treating or preventing mental illnesses and cognitive disorders in older adults.

SEARCH STRATEGY: A search was conducted using Ovid MEDLINE, EMBASE, and PsycINFO articles published from 1993 to 2017.

SELECTION CRITERIA: 1) Randomized controlled trials, 2) involving older adults (>60 years old), 3) suffering from mental illness or cognitive decline, 4) comparing mind-body interventions with a control group. Mind-body interventions included: imagery, meditation & mindfulness, prayer, autogenic training, tai chi & variants, and yoga. Control group included: health education, other non-pharmacological interventions, treatment as usual, or no treatment at all.

DATA COLLECTION AND ANALYSIS: Data included number of patients, age, psychiatric diagnoses, type of intervention, frequency and duration, control conditions, outcomes measures and treatment results.

RESULTS: 3916 articles were reviewed and ten met inclusion criteria. Six were on Tai Chi and four assessed meditation-based therapies. Clinically significant improvement in depressive and anxiety symptoms were reported, as well as improvement in some domains of cognition and reduced risk of cognitive deterioration.

CONCLUSION: There is increasing evidence that mind-body interventions are may potentially be useful in the treatment or prevention of geriatric mental illnesses and cognitive disorders. There are important methodological limitations of the current literaturesuch as small sample sizes, heterogeneous study populations, and varying clinical outcomes.

Copyright © 2018 American Association for Geriatric Psychiatry. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

PMID: 30527963 DOI: 10.1016/j.jagp.2018.10.020

BACK