Focus Area: Integrative Approaches to Care
The panel discussants will present on the outcomes of four recent pragmatic trials covering the spectrum of Ayurvedic medicine, yoga, and meditation as therapeutic approaches for both acute and chronic conditions. The presenters will discuss: (1) a pilot study of a whole-systems Ayurveda and Yoga Therapy intervention for obesity; (2) a comparative eﬀectiveness randomized controlled trial of hatha yoga, physical therapy, and education for non-specific chronic low back pain in low-income minority populations; (3) an investigation of the therapeutic usefulness of Shirodhara (Ayurvedic oil dripping therapy) as a treatment for insomnia; and (4) a discussion of the evidence base supporting implementation of meditation interventions in schools and workplace settings. Discussants will present information on study designs, research methodology, and outcome measure selection to highlight special considerations in conducting research on whole medical systems that use multi-target therapies and focus on patient-centered outcomes. Ayurvedic medicine and yoga are characterized by low-cost, noninvasive interventions that can be usefully offered as part of an integrative medicine therapeutic approach.