This study demonstrates that an intervention of yoga postures and coherent breathing over 12 weeks was efficacious in reducing symptoms of depression, anxiety, sleep disturbance, many additional measures. I would view this as a proof of concept study which has a small sample size. Eight psychological domains remained significant after applying the Bonferroni correction for multiple comparisons. These studies are not easy to conduct as it is tough to operationalize. It not like a 100 mg dose of medicine is tested against a placebo. In my opinion, the yoga intervention needs further development under the category of complementary and alternative treatments (CAM).
It is important to note the PHQ-9 measured depressive symptoms decreased by 37% associated with the yoga intervention which was greater than seen in placebo-controlled trials.
There was an increase in positivity, positive engagement, revitalization, and tranquility. There was a decrease in physical exhaustion, anxiety, depression, and sleep disturbance regardless of LDG or HDG. It is interesting to note that Yoga characterized by dose. Many of these domains are items on the PHQ-9.
The current study did not reveal any significant between-group differences which may be related to the small sample size calling for larger study. Because the intervention was characterized into LDG and HDG there was no placebo arm.
Please note we have several patients suffering from anxiety, depression and negativity who have tried a variety of medications where yoga can be suggested. Having comorbid chronic anxiety results in tougher to treat patients.
Summary: This pilot study suggests that yoga should be considered for our patients with MDD as it alleviates many of the symptoms in depression. Improvement in sleep, anxiety, and positivity to name a few. It is also important to know that even if done less often based on one's schedule there is a significant benefit. We should be recommending this treatment to our anxious depressed patients where medications are having limited benefits.