According to a study published today on bmj.com, referring individuals with schizophrenia to group art therapy does not enhance their social functioning or mental health. The results pose a challenge for national treatment guidelines, given that doctors are recommended to consider all individuals with schizophrenia for arts therapies. As many as 1 in 100 individuals will be affected by schizophrenia - a complex mental disorder - at some period in their lives. Although symptoms of schizophrenia can be reduce with antipsychotic drugs, several individuals still experience poor mental health and social functioning. Even though national treatment guidelines recommended art therapy as an additional treatment for people with schizophrenia, very few investigations have studied its clinical effects.
The Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine reports that researchers from the Thomas Jefferson University Hospital have discovered that adults with memory impairment and memory loss may benefit from mantra-based meditation, which has a positive effect on people's emotional responses to stress, fatigue and anxiety. For their study, the researchers enrolled 15 older adults with memory problems that ranged from mild age-associated memory impairment to mild impairment, with Alzheimer's disease on a Kirtan Kriya (KK) mantra-based meditation course, that involved 12 minutes of meditation, per day, for a period of eight weeks, and a control group to listen to classical music for the same amount of time over 8 weeks. Preliminary findings revealed a substantial increase in cerebral blood flow in the patients' prefrontal, superior frontal, and superior parietal cortices, and also better cognitive function.
A study published online in The International Journal of Oncology reports findings from a team of scientists at Indiana University, Methodist Research Institute, who examined a botanical formula containing botanical extracts, phytonutrients, botanically-enhanced medicinal mushrooms, and antioxidants, that kills aggressive prostate cancer tumors. The researchers conducted experiments in mice using a human prostate cancer tumor model. This is the third publication from a major university study reporting important findings of this particular multi-nutrient prostate formula to fight the invasive behavior of aggressive prostate cancer cells, tumor growth and metastasis. Dr. Daniel Sliva, who led the research, commented: "Multiple studies demonstrate that this prostate formula is a possible treatment for hormone refractory (androgen independent) prostate cancer.
Hailed since ancient times for its medicinal properties, we still have a lot to learn about the effects of rosemary. Now researchers writing in Therapeutic Advances in Psychopharmacology, published by SAGE, have shown for the first time that blood levels of a rosemary oil component correlate with improved cognitive performance. Rosemary ( Rosmarinus officinalis ) is one of many traditional medicinal plants that yield essential oils. But exactly how such plants affect human behaviour is still unclear. Mark Moss and Lorraine Oliver, working at the Brain, Performance and Nutrition Research Centre at Northumbria University, UK designed an experiment to investigate the pharmacology of 1, 8-cineole (1, 3, 3-trimethyl-2-oxabicyclo[2, 2, 2]octane), one of rosemary's main chemical components.
Menopausal women prefer non-medical treatment for their symptoms and want more support from their GP and partner, finds a new study published in BJOG: An International Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology. This community based study looked at 4407 women aged 45 to 54 living in north east Scotland. The participants were asked to complete a questionnaire about their menopausal symptoms and their management. The questionnaire included a symptom checklist which asked about problems such as stiff joints, aches and pains, headaches, vaginal dryness, hot flushes, night sweats, depression, anxiety, mood swings, decreased sexual interest and menstrual symptoms. Participants were asked whether they had experienced the symptom in the last month and how bothered they were by this. The study found that nearly half of the women (46.