Current Research on Complementary and Alternative Medicine (CAM) in the Treatment of Anxiety Disorders: An Evidence-Based Review

Authors: Trkulja V (1) , Barić H (2)
(1) Department of Pharmacology, Zagreb University School of Medicine (2) Department of Neurosurgery, University Hospital Center Zagreb
Source: Adv Exp Med Biol. 2020;1191:415-449
DOI: 10.1007/978-981-32-9705-0_22 Publication date: 2020 E-Publication date: Jan. 31, 2020 Availability: abstract Copyright: © Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2020
Language: English Countries: Not specified Location: Not specified Correspondence address:


Article abstract

Complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) encompasses a wide range of different nonmainstream therapies that have been increasingly used for treatment or adjunctive treatment of various ailments with anxiety/anxiety disorders being one of the commonly CAM (self)-medicated conditions. Thousands of published papers refer to use of CAM in various psychiatric disorders or in healthy or medically ill patients with mood or anxiety difficulties. In this chapter we focus specifically on clinically diagnosed (in line with the standard criteria) anxiety disorders and overview evidence of efficacy/safety of a range of CAM modalities: biologically based therapies (typically herbal preparations and less so nutraceuticals); manipulative and body-based therapies (acupuncture, aerobic exercise, massage, therapeutic touch, repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation, balneotherapy, and others); mind-body therapies (yoga, Morita therapy, Tai Chi, reiki, Chinese cognitive therapy, religious and spiritual interventions, relaxation, mediation, and mindfulness-based interventions); and alternative medical systems (Ayurveda, homeopathy). We focus exclusively on randomized controlled trials and attempt to evaluate the existing body of evidence in the same manner that is applied to mainstream treatments.

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