Search for medical applications of qigong with the qigong database

Author: Sancier KM
Conference/Journal: J. Alt. Compl. Med.
Date published: 2001
Other: Volume ID: 7 , Issue ID: 1 , Pages: 93-95 , Word Count: 649

Qigong is the ancient art of health maintenance and healing that originated several thousand years ago in China. Qigong (pronounced chee gong) embodies two principles, Qi the vital energy of the body and gong the practice and training of the Qi. A person practices Qigong by a combination of exercises including meditation, visualization, breathing and movement. A skilled practitioner of Qigong is able to project Qi to improve the health of another person. The ultimate goal of Qigong is to improve the functions of the body in a balanced way.

Beginning about 1980, extensive clinical and experimental research on medical applications of Qigong was carried out by scientists in China. Most of these studies were reported only at international conferences, and only a few were published because suitable scientific journals are not available in China. The Qigong Database™ is a compilation of references to most of these studies as well as to reports in scientific journals, books and Medline. Most of the references contain abstracts in English that may be several pages in length with tables of data and statistical analysis. The Qigong Database provides the only record in English of the vast amount of research on Qigong from China as well from other countries. The Database contains reports of therapies that have been tried and claimed to be effective. These reports can be used as a guide for improving health and for deciding what further research may be required to confirm promising applications of Qigong. While few research studies on Qigong conform strictly to western scientific protocols, the collection of research is so large that it cannot be ignored.

The entire collection of 1680 references in the Qigong Database™ (version 5.0) can be searched using any key word(s). The abstracts contain information on how Qigong has been applied to treat different medical conditions and on the philosophy and theory of Qigong. The importance of Qigong in treating some medical applications is illustrated by the frequency that some health-related terms appear in the Qigong Database, as shown in the table.

Table 1. Frequency of appearance of health-related terms.

Health-related terms Frequency of appearance
Aging 55
Anesthesia 15
Anxiety 28
Arthritis 19
Asthma 25
Blood and circulation 105
Cancer 114
Cardiac 34
Dementia 4
Dizziness 15
Hypertension 97
Immune 95
Neuro (-pathy, -logic, -logical) 9
Pain 137
Paralysis 18
Parkinson 5
Psychoneuroimmunology 9
Psychosomatic 27
Stroke 20
Tinnitus 9
Vertigo 5

Note: A term may appear multiple times in one citation, for example, in the title as well as in the abstract.

The Database displays information in two formats. Figure 1 illustrates the list format of all records, including author, paper title, date and citation, and all which items can be sorted independently. Figure 2 illustrates the record format showing the details of a given reference including the abstract.

Medical Qigong is of increasing interest in the West as a complementary approach for treating medical conditions in a cost-effective way. Recently, the Qigong Database™ has been used as source material for eight books, seven dissertations and numerous research studies. Feedback from medical practitioners, scientists and the public has been overwhelmingly supportive.

Version 5.0 of the Database has been updated and now is available on a compact disk that operates with Windows and Macintosh compatible computers. A read-only version of ProCite’s bibliographic software (Version 4.0.3) is provided to enable searching and sorting of material based on any key words and production of bibliographies and printing. This version of ProCite includes the ‘Cite as You Write’ feature that works with Microsoft Word to enables the insertion of references while writing papers.

The Qigong Database is supplied only by the Qigong Institute, which can also develop customized searches and bibliographies. Further information can be found at the web site <> or by contacting the Qigong Institute by E-mail at or by mail at the Qigong Institute, 561 Berkeley Avenue, Menlo Park, CA 94025, USA.

Captions for Figures 1 & 2:
Figure 1. Citations in list format from Qigong Database.
Figure 2. A citation in record format from the Qigong Database.