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Evid Based Complement Alternat Med. 2013;2013:485341. doi: 10.1155/2013/485341. Epub 2013 Jul 31.

Effects of qigong exercise on fatigue, anxiety, and depressive symptoms of patients with chronic fatigue syndrome-like illness: a randomized controlled trial.

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1
Centre on Behavioral Health, The University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Anxiety/depressive symptoms are common in patients with chronic fatigue syndrome- (CFS-) like illness. Qigong as a modality of complementary and alternative therapy has been increasingly applied by patients with chronic illnesses, but little is known about the effect of Qigong on anxiety/depressive symptoms of the patients with CFS-like illness.

PURPOSE:

To investigate the effects of Qigong on fatigue, anxiety, and depressive symptoms in patients with CFS-illness.

METHODS:

One hundred and thirty-seven participants who met the diagnostic criteria for CFS-like illness were randomly assigned to either an intervention group or a waitlist control group. Participants in the intervention group received 10 sessions of Qigong training twice a week for 5 consecutive weeks, followed by home-based practice for 12 weeks. Fatigue, anxiety, and depressive symptoms were assessed at baseline and postintervention.

RESULTS:

Total fatigue score [F(1,135) = 13.888, P < 0.001], physical fatigue score [F(1,135) = 20.852, P < 0.001] and depression score [F(1,135) = 9.918, P = 0.002] were significantly improved and mental fatigue score [F(1,135) = 3.902, P = 0.050] was marginally significantly improved in the Qigong group compared to controls. The anxiety score was not significantly improved in the Qigong group.

CONCLUSION:

Qigong may not only reduce the fatigue symptoms, but also has antidepressive effect for patients with CFS-like illness. Trial registration HKCTR-1200.

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