Prayers for patients with internal and cardiological diseases - An applicable therapeutic method?
Previous intercessory prayer studies showed symptom improvement and lower rates of complications in patients who were prayed for, whether it was a direct prayer or a distant intercessory prayer. The effect of intercessory prayer was not observed in cardiology patients during two new multicentre studies (MANTRA, STEP). The STEP study actually showed an unfavourable effect when the patient knew of distant prayers made on his/her behalf. Thus, prayer as an "applicable therapeutic method" could not be empirically verified. However, active prayer within the framework of a doctor-patient relationship can strengthen the patient's optimism and activate the body's healing resources.