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Evid Based Complement Alternat Med. 2013;2013:215254. doi: 10.1155/2013/215254. Epub 2013 Aug 6.

Tai chi for essential hypertension.

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Department of Cardiology, Guang'anmen Hospital, China Academy of Chinese Medical Sciences, Beixiange 5, Xicheng District, Beijing 100053, China.



To assess the current clinical evidence of Tai Chi for essential hypertension (EH).


7 electronic databases were searched until 20 April, 2013.


We included randomized trials testing Tai Chi versus routine care or antihypertensive drugs. Trials testing Tai Chi combined with antihypertensive drugs versus antihypertensive drugs were also included. Data Extraction and Analyses. Study selection, data extraction, quality assessment, and data analyses were conducted according to the Cochrane standards.


18 trials were included. Methodological quality of the trials was low. 14 trials compared Tai Chi with routine care. 1 trial compared Tai Chi with antihypertensive drugs. Meta-analysis all showed significant effect of TaiChi in lowering blood pressure (BP). 3 trials compared Tai Chi plus antihypertensive drugs with antihypertensive drugs. Positive results in BP were found in the other 2 combination groups. Most of the trials did not report adverse events, and the safety of Tai Chi is still uncertain.


There is some encouraging evidence of Tai Chi for EH. However, due to poor methodological quality of included studies, the evidence remains weak. Rigorously designed trials are needed to confirm the evidence.

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