Background: Elevated stress is associated with adverse cardiovascular disease outcomes and accounts in part for the poorer recovery experienced by women compared with men after myocardial infarction (MI). Psychosocial interventions improve outcomes overall but are less effective for women than for men with MI, suggesting the need for different approaches. Mindfulness-based cognitive therapy (MBCT) is an evidence-based intervention that targets key psychosocial vulnerabilities in women including rumination (i.e., repetitive negative thinking) and low social support. This article describes the rationale and design of a multicenter randomized controlled trial to test the effects of telephone-delivered MBCT (MBCT-T) in women with MI. Methods: We plan to randomize 144 women reporting elevated perceived stress at least two months after MI to MBCT-T or enhanced usual care (EUC), which each involve eight weekly telephone sessions. Perceived stress and a set of patient-centered health outcomes and potential mediators will be assessed before and after the 8-week telephone programs and at 6-month follow-up. We will test the hypothesis that MBCT-T will be associated with greater 6-month improvements in perceived stress (primary outcome), disease-specific health status, quality of life, depression and anxiety symptoms, and actigraphy-based sleep quality (secondary outcomes) compared with EUC. Changes in mindfulness, rumination and perceived social support will be evaluated as potential mediators in exploratory analyses. Conclusions: If found to be effective, this innovative, scalable intervention may be a promising secondary prevention strategy for women with MI experiencing elevated perceived stress.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine