Phil B.FontanarosaMD, Interim CoeditorIndividualAuthorMargaret A.WinkerMD, Deputy EditorIndividualAuthorStephenLurieMD PhD, Fishbein FellowIndividualAuthor
To the Editor: Dr Smyth and colleagues1 present data from 126 patients with asthma and
rheumatoid arthritis who were randomized to either writing about the most
stressful event of their lives or about emotionally neutral topics. They concluded
that writing about stressful experiences caused clinically relevant improvement
in disease status in patients with mild to moderate asthma or rheumatoid arthritis.
We believe that these results, although provocative, provide insufficient
evidence that writing about stressful life experiences brings about clinically
meaningful symptom reduction in patients with these diseases. We have the
following concerns with the study's methods.
Gandhi N, Tosiello L. Symptom Reduction After Writing About Stressful Experiences. JAMA. 1999;282(19):1811-1812. doi:10-1001/pubs.JAMA-ISSN-0098-7484-282-19-jbk1117