Parkinson's disease is a progressive neurological disorder that affects movement and causes tremors, stiffness, and problems with balance and coordination. It can also affect mood and cognitive function, leading to depression and other mental health issues. Clinical practice guidelines recommend resilience training and exercise for patients with Parkinson's disease to manage these symptoms.
A clinical trial compared the effects of a modified mindfulness meditation program to stretching and resistance training exercise (SRTE) in patients with mild-to-moderate Parkinson's disease. The trial enrolled 126 potential participants and randomized 68 eligible participants to receive eight weekly 90-minute sessions of either mindfulness meditation or SRTE.
The results of the trial showed that the mindfulness meditation group had significantly better improvement in outcomes, particularly for improving depressive symptoms at week 8 and maintaining emotional stability at week 20. Both groups demonstrated significant immediate, small-moderate effects on cognition. However, the mindfulness meditation group showed better outcomes overall, suggesting that it may be a promising strategy for managing depressive symptoms and maintaining emotional stability, with comparable benefits on cognitive performance.
It's important to note that the study used convenience sampling, which means that the participants were not randomly selected from a larger population, so the results may not be generalizable to all people with Parkinson's disease. Additionally, the trial was assessor-blinded, which means that the researchers who measured the outcomes were not aware of which treatment each participant received, reducing the risk of bias in the results.