The health effects of Baduanjin exercise (a type of Qigong exercise) in breast cancer survivors: A randomized, controlled, single-blinded trial

Published:February 22, 2019DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ejon.2019.01.007

      Highlights

      • Baduanjin exercise is a Chinese traditional Qigong exercise composed of eight movements with the features of coordinating body and mind.
      • There is an increasing evidence to support the positive effects of Baduanjin exercise on health outcomes in various groups of people.
      • In this study the efficacy of Baduanjin exercise for breast cancer survivors has been assessed via a single-blind randomized controlled trial.
      • Breast cancer survivors underwent 6 months of Baduanjin exercise indicated positive outcomes on physical and psychological health recovery.
      • Baduanjin exercise is worth recommended by oncology nurses for breast cancer survivors during their long rehabilitation journeys.

      Abstract

      Purpose

      This study aimed to evaluate the effectiveness of Baduanjin exercise, which is a traditional Chinese Qigong exercise, in breast cancer survivors to assess its efficacy for physical and psychological rehabilitation.

      Methods

      The study was a single-blinded randomized controlled trial. Eighty-six subjects were randomly assigned to the intervention (n = 46) or control (n = 40) groups. The intervention group received Baduanjin exercise 3 days/week at hospital and another 4 days/week at home for 6 months, whereas the control group were requested to maintain their original physical activity. Outcomes included body mass index (BMI), heart rate variability, lung capacity, arm circumference, shoulder range of motion, step test index, anxiety, depression, and quality of life (QOL).

      Results

      After 6 months of intervention, heart rate variability and shoulder range of motion were significantly improved in the Baduanjin group compared to the control group (P < 0.05). There were also significant improvements in depression, QOL, and four QOL dimension scores (physical well-being, social well-being, functional well-being, and breast cancer subscale) (P < 0.05). However, there were no differences in the BMI, lung capacity, arm circumference, step test index, anxiety, and the emotional well-being QOL dimension scores.

      Conclusion

      Our findings indicate that Baduanjin is an effective intervention for improving physical and psychological health outcomes among breast cancer survivors, which is worth recommending and implementing by oncology nurses for breast cancer survivors during their long rehabilitation journeys.

      Keywords

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