The C.A.M. Report
Complementary and Alternative Medicine: Fair, Balanced, and to the Point
  • About this web log

    This blog ran from 2006 to 2016 and was intended as an objective and dispassionate source of information on the latest CAM research. Since my background is in pharmacy and allopathic medicine, I view all CAM as advancing through the development pipeline to eventually become integrated into mainstream medical practice. Some will succeed while others fail. But all are treated fairly here.

  • About the author

    John Russo, Jr., PharmD, is president of The MedCom Resource, Inc. Previously, he was senior vice president of medical communications at, a complementary and alternative medicine website.

  • Common sense considerations

    The material on this weblog is for informational purposes. It is not medical advice or counsel. Be smart, consult your health professional before using CAM.

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  • Recent Comments

    Accumulating evidence supports music therapy for depression

    Researchers at the University of Jyvaskyla, in Finland, studied the benefits of music therapy when added to standard care among working-age people with depression.

    First, the details.

    • 79 people with an ICD-10 diagnosis of depression were randomly assigned to a treatment group.
      • Individual music therapy + standard care (20 bi-weekly sessions)
      • Standard care only
    • Changes in depression, anxiety, general functioning, quality of life, and alexithymia (inability to identify or describe emotions) were recorded at 3 and 6 months.

    And, the results.

    • Participants receiving music therapy + standard care showed greater improvement than those receiving standard care in depression symptoms and general functioning at the 3-month follow-up.
    • The response rate was significantly higher for the music therapy + standard care group compared to the standard care only group.

    The bottom line?

    The authors concluded, “Individual music therapy combined with standard care is effective for depression among working-age people with depression.”

    Recently published studies that support these findings include the following.

    • Among elderly depressed patients
      • Researchers at the National University of Singapore reported, “there were statistically significant reductions in geriatric depression scores and sleep quality at week 4.”
    • In older people with dementia
      • Researchers at Griffith University, in Nathan, Australia, reported that more than half of those in the music group reported improvements in self-esteem over time.
    • In patients with Alzheimer’s type depression,
      • Researchers at Inserm, in Montpellier, France, reported significant improvements in anxiety and depression in the music therapy group from week 4 and until week 16.
        • Furthermore, the effect of music therapy was sustained up to 8 weeks after discontinuation of sessions between weeks 16 and 24.

    4/16/11 18:14 JR

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