Skip to main content

Meditation could help veterans suffering from PTSD, Minneapolis VA finds


Meditation techniques may be able to help veterans suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) who haven't found success to current treatment methods, a study at the Minneapolis Veterans Affairs Medical Center found.

About 23 percent of veterans who return from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan have been diagnosed with PTSD, and for some, the symptoms of PTSD can linger, interfering with the way they function in everyday life.

There are proven treatments for PTSD, but as many as 60 percent of veterans never begin the treatments or drop out of them.

But this new research, which was co-authored by Minneapolis VA psychologist Melissa Polusny and published Tuesday by the Journal of American Medicine Association, could help change that.

The study, which assessed symptoms of 116 veterans with PTSD at the Minneapolis VA Medical Center, found that "mindfulness-based stress reduction therapy" reduced the severity of PTSD symptoms more rapidly than standard group counseling did.

Roughly half (49 percent) of the veterans undergoing mindfulness training showed reductions in their symptoms in the two-month follow-up to the treatment, while only 28 percent of the comparison group did.

It's not quite clear as to how this research will affect the way PTSD is treated around the country, with Polusny noting follow-up research, including testing the therapy against proven forms of treatment, is needed, the Star Tribune says.

However, this study could help build a body of research to help improve the lives of veterans suffering from PTSD, MPR News notes.

Polusny and others who worked on the study are in Washington, D.C. to brief federal VA leaders on the results and discuss how their research could be used in clinical care and further research, the Star Tribune says.

Next Up

Screen Shot 2020-08-14 at 6.45.53 PM

Teen arrested over fatal shooting of 5-year-old boy in Brooklyn Park

Police say the teen was filming a social media video while handling a gun.

Joe Biden

President Biden coming to Minnesota to promote Bipartisan Infrastructure Law

Tuesday's trip follows passage of the $1.2 trillion Bipartisan Infrastructure Deal.

Kirill Kaprizov

Kaprizov gets into the holiday spirit to rout Jets

Kirill Kaprizov's four points led the Wild to a 7-1 victory.

Kirk Cousins

Coller: Cure to Vikings' disrupted season lies in an explosive passing game

The Vikings go to San Francisco knowing that a win would be a huge boost to their playoff hopes.

unsplash football helmet ground

Judge upholds star QBs suspension for state championship game

Sam Backer, of Chatfield Senior High, won't be allowed to play in Friday's title game.

Screen Shot 2021-11-25 at 7.53.37 AM

Another 5,000 lbs. of goldfish removed from Carver County lakes

It all likely stemmed from people dumping their pets into local waters a few years ago.

Rosaleia Shelton

Appeal to find 19-year-old missing from Bloomington

The teen left her home on Monday afternoon.

hospital, emergency room

Deaths of twin fetuses after woman was shot ruled a double homicide

The woman was shot in the abdomen in mid-September.

Payton Willis / Gopher Basketball

Gophers improve to 5-0 with win over Jacksonville

The Gophers are establishing momentum early in the season.


Feds find failures at Minneapolis VA over veteran's suicide

He took his own life 24 hours after being discharged from a mental health unit.