1 Jefferson-Myrna Brind Center of Integrative Medicine , Philadelphia, PA.
2 Alzheimer's Research and Prevention Foundation, Tucson, AZ.
3 Private Practice, Agoura, CA.
Abstract Background: This study assesses changes in mood and anxiety in subjects with memory loss who participated in an 8-week Kirtan Kriya meditation program. Perceived spirituality also was observed. Previous reports from this group showed changes in cognitive function and cerebral blood flow (CBF). The purpose of this observation was to assess outcome measures of mood and spirituality, and to determine whether or not such outcome measures corresponded with changes in CBF.
Methods: Fifteen (15) subjects (mean age 62 ±7 years) with memory problems were enrolled in an 8-week meditation program. Before and after the 8-week meditation, subjects were given a series of neuropsychologic tests, along with measures of mood, anxiety, and spirituality. Moreover, they underwent single photon emission computed tomography (SPECT) scans before and after the study. The results show an impact of the meditation technique in several brain sections that can also correspond to positive results in the subjects' affect and spirituality measures.
Results: The meditation training program resulted in notable improvement trends in mood, anxiety, tension, and fatigue, with some parameters reaching statistical significance. All major trends correlated with changes in CBF. There were nonsignificant trends in spirituality scores that did not correlate with changes in CBF.
Conclusions: An 8-week, 12 minute a day Kirtan Kriya meditation program in patients with memory loss resulted in positive changes in mood, anxiety, and other neuropsychological parameters. Moreover, these changes corresponded to changes in CBF.
Ed note: original abstract was published in the Journal of Alternative and Complement Medicine. 2012 Jan;18(1):48-53.