When studying prevention and treatment methods for psychological symptoms, such as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), depression, and anxiety, among cardiac arrest survivors, researchers found that survivors who were more mindful reported fewer adverse psychological symptoms. The findings were presented at the American Heart Association’s Resuscitation Science Symposium 2021.
Analysts studied 129 people from the Sudden Cardiac Arrest Foundation’s online support group (average age, 52, 52% male, 98% White) who had survived cardiac arrest. Participants completed a baseline mental health survey in 2019, and another at one-year follow-up.
Data showed that cardiac arrest survivors who were more mindful, defined in the study as being aware of the present in a nonjudgmental way, reported fewer psychological symptoms of depression, anxiety, and PTSD than survivors who are less mindful
Study author, Alex Presciutti, MA, MSCS, from the University of Colorado, noted that, “Although survival rates have improved, the physical, cognitive and psychological effects of surviving cardiac arrest may linger for years.” However, Presciutti suggested that “practicing mindfulness appears to be a potential protective factor against psychological symptoms and should, therefore, be studied further in this population.”