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Mindfulness training for community-based psychotherapists: a feasibility study

Sucich, James T; Lehrer, Jeremy; Breitbart, Vicki; Julliard, Kell N
BACKGROUND:While mindfulness training's feasibility has been assessed in many health care settings, the feasibility of teaching mindfulness to psychotherapists of various orientations for both self- and patient-care has not been explored. The objectives of this feasibility assessment were to determine the degree to which clinic psychotherapists were willing to complete a skills-based mindfulness training program; evaluate the acceptability of integrating mindfulness interventions into an urban community mental health clinic; examine the training's influence on both personal mindfulness practice and integration into patient care; and explore the impact of a support group following the training. METHODS:Data on six aspects of feasibility were gathered through quantitative surveys, semi-structured qualitative interviews, and group observation and feedback, analyzed using grounded theory. RESULTS:Sixteen therapists and one administrator attended at least one session of this voluntary program and responded to the associated surveys. At 1-year post-training, 7 participants had attended one or more group support sessions, and 4 more than 50% of sessions. The following factors were identified as contributing to the training's success: significant interest on the part of clinic staff to receive the training; diversity of the teaching staff, buy-in from clinic administration, provision of meditation scripts, role-play exercises, the variety of practices taught, and case presentations. Therapists indicated that the training helped them create a personal mindfulness practice, and several proceeded to integrate mindfulness into client sessions. A bi-weekly support group organized after the training encompassed group practice, discussion, case presentations, and information about trauma-sensitive mindfulness. Clinicians identified the following challenges to integrating mindfulness into sessions: lack of scripts in client languages other than English, the unacceptability of mindfulness to some clients' religious beliefs, the lack of appropriateness for clients facing ongoing psychosocial crises, the lack of interest on the part of some clients, and the time constraints posed by brief therapy sessions. CONCLUSIONS:These findings indicate that such training may be feasible in community mental health settings given support from leadership and the presence of qualified facilitators within the organization. Adaptations to the training based on participant feedback can inform a larger scale trial that compares our protocol with another intervention in the treatment of a psychological disorder or condition identified by the participants as having responded favorably to the program.
PMID: 36494854
ISSN: 2055-5784
CID: 5383212

Brief Mindfulness Meditation With Night Nursing Unit Staff: A Qualitative Study

Resnicoff, Marci; Julliard, Kell
Nurses and nursing assistants working at night on an inpatient unit are under signicant stress. Because mindfulness reduces stress and enhances workplace life, this qualitative study explored night shift staff attitudes toward brief group mindfulness practice. For 8 months, 3 times a week, the staff was called together at the nursing station around midnight and led through 2 to 5 minutes of guided mindfulness meditation. Six months after these groups ended, perceptions of this experience were gathered from 5 nurses and 5 nursing assistants via interviews and open-ended questionnaires. Data were analyzed using inductive thematic analysis, with themes identied as they emerged from the data. The study findings noted that several participants were slow to recognize the value of the practice, but this shifted so that by the end, all participants felt positively about participating. Most perceived its benet for themselves as well as for others in the following areas: relationship to self and family, ability to focus, teamwork, decreased stress, improved attitude, and increased compassion toward patients. This brief team mindfulness intervention had many benets for participants and patients but took time to achieve staff buy-in. Future research should examine the generalizability of these findings and clarify implementation strategies.
PMID: 30320655
ISSN: 1550-5138
CID: 3369722

Implementation of a Mindfulness Moment Initiative for Healthcare Professionals: Perceptions of Facilitators

Duggan, Karen; Julliard, Kell
CONTEXT:Mindfulness practices in the workplace have experienced rapid growth, with initial evidence suggesting positive outcomes. Even so, little is known about implementing mindfulness-based interventions (MBI), especially internally driven programs led by volunteers rather than experts. OBJECTIVE:This study qualitatively explores volunteer facilitators' perceptions of a short-dose MBI (the mindfulness moment initiative) before and 6 weeks after implementation. METHODS:Mindfulness moments were 1-3-minute-guided periods of mindfulness led at the beginning of various staff meetings at an inner-city community medical center. Facilitators' perceptions were collected through thirty-one 30-minute semi-structured interviews before and after the MMI's first 6 weeks. Categorizing and connecting strategies were employed to explore the emergence of themes and patterns across responses. RESULTS:Mindfulness moment facilitators interviewed before the intervention expected their groups to experience several intra- and interpersonal benefits. After implementation, they perceived all of these benefits to have occurred, but some benefits were mentioned more frequently before than after implementation and vice versa. Five of six expected obstacles were reported after implementation, with timing issues emerging as the most frequently mentioned theme. Facilitators believed that benefits outweighed obstacles. Our data also suggested that mindfulness moments may provide managers with an additional way to address moments of tension occurring between co-workers. Most facilitators intended to continue leading mindfulness moments and wished to expand the practice to new departments. CONCLUSION:The mindfulness moment intervention may provide a way to bring mindfulness into organizations that is not dependent on formal training programs, a large time commitment, or a commitment to extended training. Prior knowledge of the obstacles and benefits found here may result in a more successful intervention.
PMID: 29175223
ISSN: 1878-7541
CID: 3042522

Predictors of Peak Troponin Level in Acute Coronary Syndromes: Prior Aspirin Use and SYNTAX Score

Bhatt, Hemal A; Sanghani, Dharmesh R; Lee, David; Julliard, Kell N; Fernaine, George A
The peak troponin level has been associated with cardiovascular (CV) mortality and adverse CV events. The association of peak troponin with CV risk factors and severity and complexity of coronary artery disease remains unknown. We assessed the predictors of peak troponin in patients with acute coronary syndrome (ACS). This study aims to determine the predictors of peak troponin in ACS. Cardiac catheterization (CC) reports and electronic medical records from 2010 to 2013 were retrospectively reviewed. A total of 219 patients were eligible for the study. All major CV risk factors, comorbidities, laboratory data, CC indications, and coronary lesion characteristics were included. Univariate and multivariate regression analyses were done. On multivariate linear regression analysis, ST-elevation myocardial infarction (p = 0.001, beta = 65.16) and increasing synergy between percutaneous coronary intervention with Taxus and cardiac surgery (SYNTAX) score (p = 0.002, beta = 1.15) were associated with higher peak troponin. The Pearson correlation between SYNTAX score and peak troponin was r = 0.257, p = 0.001. History of daily aspirin use was associated with lower peak troponin (p = 0.002, beta = -24.32). Prior statin use (p = 0.321, beta = -8.98) and the presence of CV risk factors were not associated with peak troponin. Coronary artery disease severity and complexity, urgency of CC, and prior aspirin use are associated with peak troponin levels in ACS. Our findings may help predict patient population with ACS who would be at a greater risk for short- and long-term CV morbidity and mortality due to elevated peak troponin.
PMID: 26900312
ISSN: 1061-1711
CID: 2399092

Do Cardiovascular Risk Factors and Coronary SYNTAX Score Predict Contrast Volume Use During Cardiac Catheterization?

Bhatt, Hemal; Turkistani, Atika; Sanghani, Dharmesh; Julliard, Kell; Fernaine, George
The association of cardiovascular risk factors and complexity and severity of coronary artery disease with contrast volume (CV) remains unknown. We assessed the predictive factors of CV use during elective and emergent cardiac catheterization (CC). Electronic medical records from 2010 to 2013 were retrospectively reviewed. A total of 708 patients were eligible. On multivariable regression analysis, the presence of obstructed coronary arteries was associated with CV (P = .01, beta = -14.17), with greater CV used in patients with single or double vessel disease compared to those with triple vessel disease. The presence of lesions with >70% stenosis in major epicardial arteries (P = .019, beta = 24.39) and ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction (P = .001, beta = 36.14) was associated with increased CV use. Elevated B-type natriuretic peptide (P = .036, beta = -17.23) and increase in Synergy between Percutaneous Coronary Intervention with Taxus and Cardiac Surgery score (P = .024, beta = -29.06) were associated with decreased CV use. These aforementioned associations were attenuated after adjusting for percutaneous coronary intervention. Our findings may help predict patient populations who could be exposed to increased CV during CC, thereby possibly increasing their risk of contrast-induced nephropathy.
PMID: 25712287
ISSN: 1940-1574
CID: 1703352

Is Mitral Annular Calcification Associated With Atherosclerotic Risk Factors and Severity and Complexity of Coronary Artery Disease?

Bhatt, Hemal; Sanghani, Dharmesh; Julliard, Kell; Fernaine, George
We assessed the association of mitral annular calcification (MAC) with atherosclerotic risk factors and severity and complexity of coronary artery disease (CAD). Cardiac catheterization reports and electronic medical records from 2010 to 2011 were retrospectively reviewed. A total of 481 patients were divided into 2 groups: MAC present (209) and MAC absent (272). All major cardiovascular risk factors, comorbidities, and coronary lesion characteristics were included. On linear regression analysis, age (P = .001, beta 1.12) and female gender (P = .031, beta 0.50) were the independent predictors of MAC. Mitral annular calcification was not independently associated with the presence of lesions with >70% stenosis (P = .283), number of obstructive vessels (P = .469), lesions with 50% to 70% stenosis (P = .458), and Synergy Between Percutaneous Coronary Intervention With Taxus and Cardiac Surgery score (P = .479). Mitral annular calcification is probably a benign marker of age-related degenerative changes in the heart independent of the severity and complexity of CAD.
PMID: 25217028
ISSN: 1940-1574
CID: 1703312

Coronary Collateral Circulation and Cardiovascular Risk Factors: Is There a Paradox?

Bhatt, Hemal; Kochar, Suzi; Htun, Wah Wah; Julliard, Kell; Fernaine, George
We sought to determine the association of major cardiovascular risk factors and other comorbidities with the presence or absence of coronary collateral (CC) circulation. All electronic medical records from 2010 to 2011 were retrospectively reviewed. A total of 563 patients were divided into 2 groups: CC present (180) and CC absent (383). Smoking (P = .012, odds ratio [OR] 1.58), hypercholesterolemia (P = .001, OR 2.21), and hypertension (P = .034, OR 1.75) were associated with the presence of CC. Increasing body mass index (BMI, P = .001) and decreasing estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR, P = .042) were associated with the absence of CC. On multivariable linear regression analysis, hypercholesterolemia (P = .001, OR 2.28), BMI (P = .012, OR 0.77), and eGFR (P = .001, OR 0.70) were found to be independently associated with CC. Our findings will help predict patient populations more likely to have presence or absence of CC circulation.
PMID: 25092680
ISSN: 1940-1574
CID: 1703322

Feasibility of energy medicine in a community teaching hospital: an exploratory case series

Dufresne, Francois; Simmons, Bonnie; Vlachostergios, Panagiotis J; Fleischner, Zachary; Joudeh, Ramsey; Blakeway, Jill; Julliard, Kell
BACKGROUND: Energy medicine (EM) derives from the theory that a subtle biologic energy can be influenced for therapeutic effect. EM practitioners may be trained within a specific tradition or work solo. Few studies have investigated the feasibility of solo-practitioner EM in hospitals. OBJECTIVE: This study investigated the feasibility of EM as provided by a solo practitioner in inpatient and emergent settings. DESIGN: Feasibility study, including a prospective case series. SETTINGS: Inpatient units and emergency department. OUTCOME MEASURES: To investigate the feasibility of EM, acceptability, demand, implementation, and practicality were assessed. Short-term clinical changes were documented by treating physicians. PARTICIPANTS: Patients, employees, and family members were enrolled in the study only if study physicians expected no or slow improvement in specific symptoms. Those with secondary gains or who could not communicate perception of symptom change were excluded. RESULTS: EM was found to have acceptability and demand, and implementation was smooth because study procedures dovetailed with conventional clinical practice. Practicality was acceptable within the study but was low upon further application of EM because of cost of program administration. Twenty-four of 32 patients requested relief from pain. Of 50 reports of pain, 5 (10%) showed no improvement; 4 (8%), slight improvement; 3 (6%), moderate improvement; and 38 (76%), marked improvement. Twenty-one patients had issues other than pain. Of 29 non-pain-related problems, 3 (10%) showed no, 2 (7%) showed slight, 1 (4%) showed moderate, and 23 (79%) showed marked improvement. Changes during EM sessions were usually immediate. CONCLUSIONS: This study successfully implemented EM provided by a solo practitioner in inpatient and emergent hospital settings and found that acceptability and demand justified its presence. Most patients experienced marked, immediate improvement of symptoms associated with their chief complaint. Substantial practicality issues must be addressed to implement EM clinically in a hospital, however.
PMID: 26035025
ISSN: 1557-7708
CID: 1739892

Does aortic valve sclerosis predicts the severity and complexity of coronary artery disease?

Bhatt, Hemal; Sanghani, Dharmesh; Julliard, Kell; Fernaine, George
AIM: We assessed the association of aortic valve sclerosis (AVS) with atherosclerotic risk factors and severity and complexity of coronary artery disease (CAD). METHODS: In this retrospective study, a total of 482 eligible patients were divided into 2 groups: AVS present and AVS absent. All major cardiovascular risk factors and coronary lesion characteristics were included. RESULTS: Age was the only independent predictor of AVS. AVS was not independently associated with the number of obstructive vessels, degree of lesion obstruction and SYNTAX score. CONCLUSION: AVS is probably a benign marker of age-related degenerative changes in the heart independent of the severity and complexity of CAD.
PMID: 26138181
ISSN: 0019-4832
CID: 1703342

Electronic Fetal Monitoring and the Outcome of Fetuses With Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development Category II Tracings An Update [Meeting Abstract]

Stevenson, Robert John; Applewhite-Black, Liat E; Julliard, Kell; Morgan, Dorcas C
ISSN: 0029-7844
CID: 1799492