Meditation training and essential hypertension: a methodological study

Author: Seer P//Raeburn JM
Conference/Journal: J Behav Med
Date published: 1980
Other: Volume ID: 3 , Issue ID: 1 , Pages: 59-71 , Special Notes: Clinical Trial Randomized Controlled Trial , Word Count: 151

Meditation training appears to be a promising psychological approach to the control of hypertension. However, most studies to date have had serious deficiencies. This study attempted to correct many of these deficiencies. Forty-one unmedicated hypertensives referred by general practitioners were randomly allocated to three groups. The treatment group (SRELAX) underwent training procedures based on Transcendental Meditation; a placebo control group (NSRELAX) underwent identical training but withou a mantra. Both procedures were compared with a no-treatment control group. The results showed modest reductions in blood pressure in both SRELAX and NSRELAX groups, compared with the no-treatment controls, with diastolic percentage reductions reaching significance (p < 0.05). There was considerable subject variation in response, with overall a mean decline i diastolic blood presure of 8-10% on 3-month follow-up. Possible indicators to predict the response of subjects are considered and reasons for the similarity in the effectiveness of the SRELAX and NSRELAX conditions are discussed.