Benefit of Qigong exercise in patients with fibromyalgia, a pilot study.

Author: Liu W, Zahner L, Cornell M, Le T, Ratner J, Wang Y, Pasnoor M, Dimachkie M, Barohn R.
1Department of Physical Therapy and Rehabilitation Sciences.
Conference/Journal: Int J Neurosci.
Date published: 2012 Jul 12
Other: Word Count: 231

Fibromyalgia patients present with widespread chronic pain and other symptoms. Some studies in the literature have reported inconsistent results after a Qigong exercise intervention in patients with fibromyalgia. The purpose of this study was to test the feasibility of a home-based Qigong exercise in patients with fibromyalgia.
A total of 14 subjects were randomly assigned into one of two groups. The experimental group went through a six-week Qigong exercise program involving meditation, deep breathing, and synchronized rhythmic body movements. The control group took part in a sham Qigong exercise program using the same body movements also for six weeks. Clinical assessments at baseline and end of intervention used the Short-Form McGill Pain Questionnaire, Multidimensional Fatigue Inventory, Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index, and Fibromyalgia Impact Questionnaire.
Group mean scores of four measurements were significantly (p<0.0125) reduced in the intervention group, but not in the control group. The percentage changes in the four measurements were 44.2%, 24.8%, 37.3%, and 44.3% in the intervention group, and 10.1%, 6.3%, 9.9%, and 11.8% in the control group.
Qigong exercise may potentially be an effective self-management approach in controlling FM symptoms. In this pilot study, regular daily Qigong exercise, accumulated number of exercise sessions, and the specific form of Qigong exercise may all be important factors for the significant improvement in the study subjects. Future research is required to determine whether the same benefit can be obtained in a larger sample.
PMID: 22784212