Mindfulness training improves post-operative pain and function in patients undergoing total joint replacement surgery.
Individuals with underlying psychological distress are at greater risk of increased pain and decreased function after total joint replacement (arthroplasty). Researchers in Australia sought to evaluate whether Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) could improve pain and physical function following total joint replacement surgery among patients with psychological distress. They randomly assigned 127 participants who had low mental well-being at baseline to either an eight-week MBSR course or to treatment as usual before surgery. A total of 101 patients ultimately underwent surgery. The group who participated in the MBSR course had significantly greater improvement in knee pain and function at 12 months post-surgery than the control group. The authors concluded that “this study represent an important advancement in the management of the sub-group of patients who exhibit psychological risk factors but are otherwise candidates for arthroplasty surgery.”
Dowsey M, et al. Complementary Therapies in Medicine. 2019;46:195-201.
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