The efficacy of Guolin-Qigong on the body-mind health of Chinese women with breast cancer: a randomized controlled trial
- 608 Downloads
This study was to evaluate the efficacy of a complementary Chinese treatment modality Guolin-Qigong (GLQG) for patients with breast cancer on the body-mind health.
A randomized controlled clinical trial was conducted among 158 women with breast cancer. Subjects were randomized to receive GLQG (test group) versus a physical stretching program (control group) following conventional treatment for breast cancer. GLQG and stretching interventions were performed twice a week over 24 weeks. The primary outcome was the change in quality of life (QoL). Secondary outcome measures included anxiety, depression, and clinical indicators. All participants were assessed at four time-points, at the beginning of the study (T1), after 12 weeks of the intervention (T2), immediately after 24-week intervention (T3), and at 48-week follow-up visit (T4).
Improvements in QoL were evident in both groups but the test group fared better than the control group at the 12th week (P < 0.01) and particularly in emotional well-being (P < 0.01) and breast cancer-specific well-being (P < 0.001). The test group showed an improvement in anxiety levels (P < 0.01), whereas the control group showed improvements in depression (P < 0.05) but there was no significant difference between groups (P > 0.05). Both groups showed improvements in immunological function and the test group fared better than the control in TNF-α levels (P < 0.05). The results in subjects who practiced more than 4 times and 6 h per week were similar to that of all subjects; however, the improvement in anxiety in the GLQG group was more obvious. There are positive correlations between QoL and anxiety and depression.
Both GLQG and physical stretching are beneficial during recovery following breast cancer. GLQC was more effective in terms of Qol improvements than physical stretching. Both programs brought improvements in anxiety or depression but had were comparable. GLQC group had a greater effect on immunological function than physical exercise.
KeywordsGuolin-Qigong RCT Breast cancer Quality of life Immune function Tumor marker
The authors thank the colleagues at School of Chinese Medicine, HKU for their advice, Chen Xiukun and Ken TSUN Wai-pan for excellent exercise guidance. The physical examination is supported by UNIMED Medical Institute Comprehensive Centre for Breast Diseases. We also appreciate Professor Colman McGrath from Faculty of Dentistry, the University of Hong Kong, for his English language proof-reading to improve the content of the manuscript.
Compliance with ethical standards
Conflict of interest
The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.
The study was approved by the Institutional Review Board of the University of Hong Kong/Hospital Authority Hong Kong West Cluster (HKU/HA HKW IRB, UW 12-046). All procedures performed in the study were in accordance with the ethical standards of HKU and with the 1964 Helsinki Declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.
- 1.Hong Kong Cancer Registry. Hospital Authority, Hong Kong Special Administrative Region. (2012). http://www3.ha.org.hk/cancereg/statistics.html.
- 4.Hong Kong Breast Cancer Registry Report No. 5. Hong Kong Breast Cancer Foundation. (2013). http://www.hkbcf.org/download/bcr_report5/full_report_2013.pdf. p. 31
- 5.Witek-Janusek, L., Albuquerque, K., Chroniak, K. R., Chroniakc, C., Durazo-Arvizud, R., & Mathews, H. L. (2008). Effect of mindfulness based stress reduction on immune function, QoL and coping in women newly diagnosed with early stage breast cancer. Brain, Behavior, and Immunity, 22(6), 969–981.CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
- 9.Xie, F. X., & Li, W. K. (1994). Ten years observation of Guo Lin Qi Gong treating cancers–16 cases. Qigong Journal, 9, 390–391.Google Scholar
- 10.Huang, N. Q. (1996). Survey and enlightenment of 335 patients doing Guo Lin Qi Gong. China Qigong Science, 2, 23–25.Google Scholar
- 11.Shen, X. D., & Hua, G. W. (2006). Guo Lin Qigong anti-cancer effects and mechanism of the review and prospects. Journal Traditional Chinese Medicine Literature, 3, 52–57.Google Scholar
- 12.Huang, L. Q., Jin, H., Liu, C. T., & Jiang, C. (1997). The effect of Guolin Qigong on prognosis and quality of life in lung cancer patients. Chinese Journal of Pathophysiology, 5, 109.Google Scholar
- 13.Deng, L. J. (2011). The study of the effects of aerobic exercise and psychological intervention on QoL of patients recovering from post-treatment of breast cancer. Journal of Nanchang College, 1, 168–171.Google Scholar
- 14.Zhao, X. M., Huang, N. Q., Shan, Y., Jin, H., Long, J. J., & Wang, H. X. (1995). Effect of Guoling Qigong on Nailfold microcirculation in patients with cancer. Chinese Journal of Microcirculation, 5(3), 38–40.Google Scholar
- 18.Tang, Z. L. (2012). Study of standard of collecting GLQG case records in breast cancer patients (pp. 7–10). Beijing: Beijing University of Chinese Medicine.Google Scholar
- 21.Stafford, L., Judd, F., Gibson, P., Komiti, A., Quinn, M., & Mann, G. B. (2014). Comparison of the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale and the Center for Epidemiological Studies Depression Scale for detecting depression in women with breast or gynecologic cancer. General Hospital Psychiatry, 36(1), 74–80.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
- 23.Molina, R., Jo, J., Filella, X., Zanón, G., Farrus, B., Muñoz, M., et al. (1998). C-erbB-2, CEA and CA 15.3 serum levels in the early diagnosis of recurrence of breast cancer patients. Anticancer Research, 19(4A), 2551–2555.Google Scholar
- 30.Buffart, L. M., Van-Uffelen, J. G. Z., Riphagen, I. I., Brug, J., Van-Mechelen, W., Brown, W. J., et al. (2012). Physical and psychosocial benefits of yoga in cancer patients and survivors, a systematic review and meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials. BMC Cancer, 12(1), 559–579.CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
- 31.Courneya, K. S., Segal, R. J., Mackey, J. R., Gelmon, K., Reid, R. D., Friedenreich, C. M., et al. (2007). Effects of aerobic and resistance exercise in breast cancer patients receiving adjuvant chemotherapy: A multicenter randomized controlled trial. Journal of Clinical Oncology, 25(28), 4396–4404.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar