Difficult Diseases

Qigong Improves Quality of Life in Women Undergoing Radiotherapy for Breast Cancer: Results of a Randomized Controlled Trial

Fudan University Shanghai Cancer Center, Shanghai, China and MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, Texas, USA


Outcomes: Qigong may have therapeutic effects in the management of Quality of Life (QOL) in women receiving radiotherapy for breast cancer. Benefits were particularly evident for patients with pre-intervention elevated levels of depressive symptoms.


 Feasibility and Acceptability of a Tai Chi Chih Randomized Controlled Trial in Senior Female Cancer Survivors

Huntsman Cancer Institute, University of Utah, Salt Lake City, UT


Outcomes: A 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.


 Levels of fatigue and distress in senior prostate cancer survivors enrolled in a 12-week randomized controlled trial of Qigong

Huntsman Cancer Institute, University of Utah, Salt Lake City, UT, USA


Outcomes: This 12-week Qigong intervention was feasible and potentially efficacious in improving senior prostate cancer survivors’ levels of fatigue and distress levels. Future, larger definitive randomized controlled trials are needed to confirm these benefits in older prostate cancer survivors and in racially and ethnically diverse populations. Qigong may be an effective nonpharmacological intervention for the management of senior prostate cancer survivors’ fatigue and distress.


 Blood Pressure, Salivary Cortisol, and Inflammatory Cytokine Outcomes in Senior Female Cancer Survivors Enrolled in a Tai Chi Chih Randomized Controlled Trial

University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Chapel Hill, NC and University of Utah, Salt Lake City, Utah and University of California, Los Angeles, California and University of New Mexico Cancer Center, Albuquerque, NM, USA


Outcomes: This Tai Chi Chih (TCC) feasibility trial was associated with significant reductions in systolic blood pressure (SBP) and cortisol area-under-curve (AUC) in senior female cancer survivors. Larger, definitive trials are needed to confirm these findings.


 Tai chi, cellular inflammation, and transcriptome dynamics in breast cancer survivors with insomnia: a randomized controlled trial

Cousins Center for Psychoneuroimmunology, UCLA Semel Institute for Neuroscience, Los Angeles, CA and Department of Psychiatry and Biobehavioral Sciences and Department of Medicine, UCLA David Geffen School of Medicine, Los Angeles, CA and Division of Health Policy and Management, UCLA Fielding School of Public Health, Los Angeles, CA and Division of Cancer Prevention and Control Research, UCLA Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center, Los Angeles, CA and Department of Psychology, UCLA, Los Angeles, CA, USA


Outcomes: Among breast cancer survivors with insomnia, 3 months of TCC reduced cellular inflammatory responses, and reduced expression of genes encoding proinflammatory mediators. Given the link between inflammation and cancer, these findings provide an evidence-based molecular framework to understand the potential salutary effects of Tai Chi Chih (TCC) on cancer survivorship.


  The effect of group aerobic exercise and t’ai chi on functional outcomes and quality of life for persons living with acquired immunodeficiency syndrome

Richard Stockton College of New Jersey, Pomona, NJ, USA.


Outcomes: This study shows that Tai Chi (TC) and aerobic exercise (EX) improve physiologic parameters, functional outcomes, and quality of life (QOL). Group intervention provides a socialization context for management of chronic HIV disease. This study supports the need for more research investigating the effect of other types of group exercise for this population. This study sets the stage for a larger randomized controlled trial to examine the potential short- and long-term effects of group exercise that may prove beneficial in the management of advanced HIV disease. Further research is warranted to evaluate additional exercise interventions that are accessible, safe, and cost-effective for the HIV population.


 Mitigating cellular inflammation in older adults: a randomized controlled trial of Tai Chi Chih

University of California, Los Angeles – Cousins Center for Psychoneuroimmunology, Semel Institute for Neuroscience


Outcomes:  Tai Chi Chih (TCC) can be considered a useful behavioral intervention to reduce circulating levels of IL-6 in older adults who show elevated levels of this inflammatory marker and are at risk for inflammation-related morbidity.