Context: The initial gain from a Pulmonary Rehabilitation Program (PRP) among patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) begins to fade away 6 months after the completion of a rehabilitation program. One possible reason may be due to the poor compliance of the patients to the existing forms of home exercise program (e.g., walking, weight training activities, etc.). Objectives: This study tested the efficacy of health qigong (HQG), a traditional Chinese exercise, as an adjunct home exercise program in optimizing the gains obtained from PRP until 6 months after discharge. Design: This was a randomized controlled trial (RCT) on a mind-body exercise intervention. Participants: Eighty (80) patients with COPD receiving conventional PRP pulmonary rehabilitation program were randomized to the HQG intervention group (n=40) and control group (n=40). Outcome measures: Assessments were undertaken by blinded assessors at baseline, discharge from training, and follow-up (FU) at 3 and 6 months. Primary outcomes involved functional capacity scales and secondary outcomes involved quality-of-life scales. Results: Intention-to-treat analysis identified trends of improvement in all outcome measures in the HQG group, whereas lesser improvement and trends of deteriorations were identified in the control group. Ancillary analysis using a per-protocol method, however, identified significantly better improvements in functional capacity measures among the HQG at the 6-month FU. Conclusions: This RCT provided some evidence to support the positive effect of HQG as an adjunct home exercise for rehabilitation among people with COPD and to support further related research.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Complementary and alternative medicine