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September 17, 2008

Mindfulness in Medicine

Author Affiliations

Author Affiliations: Department of Medicine, Children's Hospital, Boston (Dr Ludwig)and Department of Medicine, University of Massachusetts Medical School, Worcester (Dr Kabat-Zinn).

JAMA. 2008;300(11):1350-1352. doi:10.1001/jama.300.11.1350

Mindfulness refers to a meditation practice that cultivates present moment awareness. In the past 30 years, interest in the therapeutic uses of mindfulness has increased, with more than 70 scientific articles on the topic published in 2007. Meditation practices, including mindfulness, have come to the attention of neuroscientists investigating consciousness and affect regulation through mental training and to psychotherapists interested in personal development and interpersonal relationships. In this Commentary, we define mindfulness, consider possible mechanisms, explore clinical applications, and identify challenges to the field.