The relationship between doses of mindfulness-based programs and depression, anxiety, stress, and mindfulness: a dose-response meta-regression of randomized controlled trials

Journal article


Strohmaier, S. 2020. The relationship between doses of mindfulness-based programs and depression, anxiety, stress, and mindfulness: a dose-response meta-regression of randomized controlled trials. Mindfulness. https://doi.org/10.1007/s12671-020-01319-4
AuthorsStrohmaier, S.
Abstract

Abstract
Objectives: Research with mindfulness-based programs (MBPs) has found participating in an MBP to predict beneficial outcomes, however, there is currently mixed research regarding the most helpful dose. This review aimed to determine whether different doses related to MBPs significantly predict outcomes.
Methods: Systematic literature searches of electronic databases and trial registration sites for all randomized controlled trials of MBPs identified 203 studies (N=15,971). Depression was the primary outcome at post-program and follow-up, with secondary outcomes being mindfulness, anxiety and stress. Doses examined related to session numbers, duration and length, facilitator contact and practice. Dose-response relationships were analyzed using meta-regression in R with separate analyses for inactive and active controls.
Results: Initial meta-analyses found significant between-group differences favoring MBPs for all outcomes. Meta-regression results suggested significant dose-response relationships for the mindfulness outcome for doses relating to face-to-face contact (d=0.211; C.I.[0.064,0.358]), program intensity (d=0.895; C.I.[0.315,1.474]) and actual program use (d=0.013; C.I.[0.001,0.024]). The majority of results for psychological outcomes, including depression, were not significant.

Conclusions:
This meta-regression examines dose-response relationships for different types and doses relating to MBPs. Considered together, MBPs appeared helpful compared to controls, supporting previous research. Based on meta-regression results, there was no evidence that larger doses are more helpful than smaller doses for predicting psychological outcomes; a finding consistent with some previous research particularly with non-clinical populations. Additionally, greater contact, intensity and actual use of MBPs predicting increased mindfulness corresponds with previous research and theory. Potential limitations and recommendations for future research are explored.

KeywordsMindfulness; Mindfulness-based programs; Dose-response; Meta-regression; Meta-analysis; RCT; Depression; Randomized controlled trial
Year2020
JournalMindfulness
PublisherSpringer
ISSN1868-8527
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.1007/s12671-020-01319-4
Official URLhttps://doi.org/10.1007/s12671-020-01319-4
Publication dates
Online02 Mar 2020
Publication process dates
Accepted19 Jan 2020
Deposited20 Apr 2020
Accepted author manuscript
Output statusPublished
Additional information

Please note, this journal article is embargoed until 2nd March 2021.

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