Efficacy of abdomen-rubbing qigong exercise for chronic insomnia: study protocol for a randomized controlled trial

Author: Chong Guan#1, Ziji Cheng#1, Fangfang Xie1, Ruiping Wang2, Jing Zhang1, Fei Yao3, Min Fang4,5
1 Shanghai University of Traditional Chinese Medicine, Shanghai, 201203, China.
2 Shanghai Skin Disease Hospital, Shanghai, 200050, China.
3 Shanghai University of Traditional Chinese Medicine, Shanghai, 201203, China. doctoryaofei@126.com.
4 Shanghai University of Traditional Chinese Medicine, Shanghai, 201203, China. fangmin19650510@163.com.
5 Institute of Tuina, Shanghai Institute of Traditional Chinese Medicine, Shanghai, 200437, China. fangmin19650510@163.com.
Conference/Journal: Trials
Date published: 2021 Nov 6
Other: Volume ID: 22 , Issue ID: 1 , Pages: 774 , Special Notes: doi: 10.1186/s13063-021-05528-7. , Word Count: 270

Insomnia is a common sleeping disorder which affects the quality of life which can bring harms to physical and mental health of human beings and even economic development. Traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) plays an outstanding role in treating chronic diseases and alleviating their symptoms. Therefore, the purpose of this study is to assess the treatment efficacy in patients with insomnia treated with abdomen-rubbing qigong exercise (ARQE). In addition, the brain function changes of patients will be explored by resting state functional magnetic resonance imaging (rs-fMRI).

This trial is a randomized, single-blind, controlled study planned to transpire between July 1, 2020, and July 31, 2021. A sample size of 114 participants (57 per group) with chronic insomnia will be randomly assigned to receive ARQE or CBTI for 8 weeks. The study duration will be 13 weeks, including a 1-week screening period, 8 weeks of intervention, and another 4 weeks of follow-up. The primary outcome is the Pittsburgh sleep quality index scores. Secondary outcomes include insomnia severity index, gastrointestinal symptom rating scale, the Hamilton Depression Scale, and rs-fMRI scan. The adverse events will be in control.

The results of this study will help to clarify the efficacy of ARQE in the treatment of insomnia and try to use rs-fMRI technology to explore the brain function changes of ARQE in improving sleep quality in patients with insomnia disorder. If the results are as expected, this study will provide high-quality evidence for the treatment of insomnia with ARQE.

Trial registration:
China Clinical Registration Agency ChiCTR1900028009 . Registered on 19 December 2019.

Keywords: Abdomen-rubbing qigong exercise; Chronic insomnia; Functional magnetic resonance imaging; Randomized controlled trials; Traditional Chinese medicine.

PMID: 34742345 DOI: 10.1186/s13063-021-05528-7