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The effects of mindfulness and relaxation training for insomnia (MRTI) on postmenopausal women

a pilot study

Garcia, Marcelo C. PhD1; Kozasa, Elisa H. PhD1,2; Tufik, Sergio MD, PhD1; Mello, Luiz Eugênio A. M. MD, PhD1,3; Hachul, Helena MD, PhD1,4,5

doi: 10.1097/GME.0000000000001118
Original Articles

Objective: The aim of the study was to evaluate the effects of mindfulness and relaxation training for insomnia on insomnia and quality of life in postmenopausal women.

Methods: Thirty postmenopausal women aged 50 to 65 years, who were not using hormone therapy, and had a diagnosis of insomnia and an apnea–hypopnea index of less than 15, were randomly assigned to two groups: a mindfulness intervention group and a control group. They were assessed before the intervention, and 8 weeks after its completion using questionnaires assessing sleep quality (Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index), insomnia (Insomnia Severity Index), quality of life in menopause (Menopause-Specific Quality of Life), menopausal symptoms (Kupperman Menopausal Index), and level of attention (Mindfulness Awareness Attention Scale). They were also assessed through ambulatory polysomnography. This is a pilot study and is limited by its small sample size.

Results: The results of the questionnaires showed significant differences in the group that received mindfulness training compared with the control group, namely, improvements in sleep quality, a reduction in the severity of insomnia, a better quality of life, improved attention levels, and a reduction in menopausal and vasomotor symptoms. Polysomnography results showed no differences between the groups.

Conclusions: Eight weeks mindfulness meditation training improved sleep quality, quality of life, attention levels, and reduced vasomotor symptoms in postmenopausal women with insomnia.

1Departamento de Psicobiologia, Universidade Federal de São Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil

2Hospital Israelita Albert Einstein, São Paulo, Brazil

3Departamento de Fisiologia, Universidade Federal de São Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil

4Departamento de Ginecologia, Universidade Federal de São Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil

5Departamento de Ginecologia Casa de Saúde Santa Marcelina, São Paulo, Brazil.

Address correspondence to: Helena Hachul, MD, PhD, R. Napoleão de Barros 925, Cep: 04024-002 São Paulo, SP, Brazil. E-mail:

Received 19 July, 2017

Revised 14 February, 2018

Accepted 14 February, 2018

Funding/support: The present study was supported by the Associação Fundo de Incentivo à Pesquisa (AFIP), Coordenação de Aperfeiçoamento de Pessoal de Nível Superior (CAPES), Fundacao de Amparo a Pesquisa (FAPESP), and CNPq. These are nonprofit organizations that sponsor research in Brazil.

Clinical trial registration: Mindfulness and Relaxation Training for Insomnia (MRTI) in postmenopausal women: a randomized clinical trial: clinical, identifier NCT01593436.

Financial disclosure/conflicts of interest: This was not an industry-supported study. In accordance with the policies and procedures of Menopause: The Journal of The North American Menopause Society, and my ethical obligations as a researcher, I report that I have no financial and/or business interests related to the study. The other authors have also reported no financial conflicts of interest.

© 2018 by The North American Menopause Society.