Preoperative Rehabilitation in Lung Cancer Patients: Yoga Approach

  • Giovanni Barassi
  • Rosa Grazia Bellomo
  • Antonella Di Iulio
  • Achille Lococo
  • Annamaria Porreca
  • Piera Attilia Di Felice
  • Raoul Saggini
Part of the Advances in Experimental Medicine and Biology book series (AEMB, volume 1096)


Lung cancer is one of the leading causes of cancer death worldwide. Surgical removal remains the best option for most tumors of this type. Reduction of cigarette consumption in patients with lung cancer candidates for the surgery could limit the impact of tobacco on postsurgical outcomes. Breathing exercises appear to help combat cigarette cravings. Yoga exercise benefits have been studied in lung cancer survivors, rather than in the preoperative setting. In this study, we have recruited 32 active smokers affected by lung cancer and being candidates for pulmonary surgery. The patients were randomly assigned to two groups: one treated by standard breathing and the other treated by yoga breathing (YB). The groups were evaluated at times T0 (baseline) and T1 (after 7 days of treatment) to compare the effects of the two breathing treatments on pulmonary performance in a presurgery setting. Pulmonary and cardiocirculatory functions have been tested using a self-calibrating computerized spirometer and a portable pulse oximetry device. The findings demonstrate appreciable short-term improvement in lung function assessed by spirometry. We conclude that yoga breathing can be a beneficial preoperative support for thoracic surgery.


Active smokers Breathing exercises Lung cancer Pranayama Preoperative rehabilitation Pulmonary function Spirometry Thoracic surgery Yoga 


Competing Interests

The authors declare no competing interests in relation to this article.


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Giovanni Barassi
    • 1
  • Rosa Grazia Bellomo
    • 2
  • Antonella Di Iulio
    • 3
  • Achille Lococo
    • 3
  • Annamaria Porreca
    • 1
  • Piera Attilia Di Felice
    • 1
  • Raoul Saggini
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Medical Oral and Biotechnological Science“Gabriele d’Annunzio” UniversityChieti-PescaraItaly
  2. 2.Department of Biomolecular Sciences‘Carlo Bo’ UniversityUrbinoItaly
  3. 3.Division of Thoracic SurgerySanto Spirito Hospital of PescaraPescaraItaly

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