Changes of cerebral blood flow and microcirculation under the qigong state

Author: Chu Weizhong////
Affiliation: Shanghai Qigong Institute, Shanghai, China [1]
Conference/Journal: 1st World Conf Acad Exch Med Qigong
Date published: 1988
Other: Pages: 89 , Word Count: 476

In this paper the effect of a quiet mind (or mood stillness) and breath holding on cerebral blood flow and microcirculation is reported and the qigong mechanism is discussed on the basis of the relation between qi and blood.

1. Material:
115 patients suffering from different chronic diseases participated in this test. Among them there were 55 men and 60 women, aged from 27--29. They learnt the qigong exercise and became well cooperated during the examination. In addition, the microcirculation of 5 gunia pigs and 2 mice were also examined.

2. Method:
(1) State of relaxation and stillness.
We observed: A. Cerebral blood flow with an instrument of impedance electrogram (bridge type) and amplitude of differentiation of electrical impedance. B. Registered fingertip's pulsation with a physiological recorder. C. The microcirculation of the nail's capillary with a 80 X anatomical microscope under a reflected cold light source.
(2) State of breath holding.
A. When the patients were entering the deep and slow breathing state, we again examined the cerebral blood flow. B. we examined the microcirculation of the meninx in laboratory animals during breath holding in the simulated qigong state.

3. Results:
(1) State of relaxation and stillness.
A. Cerebral blood flow 12 cases were examined with the bridge type and 15 were examined with differentiation, the amplitude obviously decreased in all patients, from 0.143± 0.05W to 0.123± 0.056W (P<0.05) and from 9.75mm to 8.63mm (P<0.001) respectively. 16 cases of the control group had very slight change from 0.160 + 0.05W to 0.150± 0.05W (P<0.05) .
B. Fingertip pulsation 34 cases were examined 6.8 -- 11 minutes after the qigong state, the pulsation increased from 9.86 + 4.28mm to 15.75±7.3mm (P< 0.001), and then gradually returned to the level before the qigong state. C. Nail's microcirculation Total 26 cases were examined, in which 7 cases' capillary loops of the nail became more clear, the number of capillary loops in 2 cases increased, the length of loops increased in 8 cases and the speed of blood flow increased in 12 cases, from 315.6 ±220.0µ/sec. to 512.5±254.6µ/sec. (P<0.001).

(2) Breath holding state.
A. Cerebral blood flow In 49 cases with breath holding for 30 seconds, the impedance amplitude increased from 0.154 ±0.06W to 0.170±0.07W (P<0.05); in 20 cases with deep breathing, the amplitude decreased form 0.187±0.05W to 0.165±0.05W (P<O.05) .
B. Microcirculation of meninges in laboratory animals in simulated breath holding for 30 sec. showed vasodilatation and increased blood flow. But the breath holding lasted for more than 30 sec., the blood flow gradually decreased from 300µ/sec. to 100µ/sec. and blood stream became sluggish and finally stopped

4. Discussion:
(1) When patients entering the relaxation and stillness state, the cerebral blood flow was decreased and the peripheral circulation was improved.
(2) When patients were in the state of breath holding for 30 sec., the cerebral blood flow was decreased (same to that of the laboratory animal). The optional time for breath holding was 15-20 sec.
(3) The above is due to the changes of qi and blood in the qigong state. The mechanism is to be explored.