The Chicago Tribune reports, “The relationship between prayer and physical healing has long been the subject of conflicting studies. Some indicate prayer can help, but at least one study concluded that in some cases it can be harmful.”
Researchers “found that coronary bypass patients who were told strangers were praying for them did worse than those who got no prayers.” But, “increasingly … prayers are being offered by chaplains, doctors, nurses, and social workers. They are recited in hospitals before and after surgery, during treatments, upon admission and discharge, and on the anniversary of a diagnosis.”
Despite this one negative study, there are not “some” studies showing prayer can help, but hundreds of studies showing a positive association between a wide variety of spiritual interventions (spiritual assessment, prayer, spiritual counseling, etc.) and physical and emotional health outcomes.
You can read more on this topic in my book, Alternative Medicine: The Christian Handbook. You can order a signed copy here. You can also read some of my blogs on Faith-Based Health and Healing: