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Integr Cancer Ther. 2013 Nov;12(6):464-74. doi: 10.1177/1534735413485418. Epub 2013 Apr 25.

Feasibility and acceptability of a Tai Chi Chih randomized controlled trial in senior female cancer survivors.

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University of Utah, Salt Lake City, UT, USA.



The purpose of this randomized controlled trial (RCT) was to examine the feasibility and acceptability of a Tai Chi Chih (TCC) intervention in senior female cancer survivors with physical functioning limitations, and its effects on health-related quality of life (QOL).


This was a two-armed, parallel group, RCT with 12-weeks of Tai Chi Chih or Health Education Control.


Sixty-three senior (M age = 67 years, SD = 7.15) female cancer survivors (83% breast cancer, stages I-III) with physical functioning limitations (SF-12 Health Survey role-physical & physical functioning subscales) were randomized to 12-weeks of TCC or Health Education control (HEC). Primary outcomes were feasibility and acceptability. Secondary outcomes included health-related QOL (SF-36 Health Survey), and participants' qualitative feedback on the intervention.


Retention (TCC = 91%; HEC = 81%) and class attendance (TCC = 79%; HEC = 83%) rates, and satisfaction levels for both study arms were high, but did not significantly differ from one another. At one-week post-intervention, none of the SF-36 scores differed between the TCC and HEC groups. Within-group analyses revealed significant improvements in the mental component summary score in TCC (p = 0.01), but not in HEC. Qualitative analyses indicated that the TCC group felt they received mental and physical benefits, whereas HEC group reported on social support benefits and information received.


The TCC intervention was found to be a feasible and acceptable modality for senior female cancer survivors. Future, larger definitive trials are needed to clarify TCC dosage effects on QOL in this vulnerable population.


Tai Chi Chih; feasibility randomized controlled trial; oncology; quality of life; senior female cancer survivors

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