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Tai Chi and Qigong May Improve Motor Function, Depression and Other Symptoms in Lyme-Related Parkinson’s Disease

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Editor’s Note: While this article refers to the effects of Tai Chi and Qigong on Parkinson’s disease, it is applicable to patients with Parkinsonian-like symptoms due to Lyme disease. Some researchers believe in fact that Parkinson’s can be a manifestation of late stage Lyme disease.
The impact of Tai Chi and Qigong mind-body exercises on motor and non-motor function and quality of life in Parkinson's disease: A systematic review and meta-analysis.
PURPOSE: To systematically evaluate and quantify the effects of Tai Chi/Qigong (TCQ) on motor (UPDRS III, balance, falls, Timed-Up-and-Go, and 6-Minute Walk) and non-motor (depression and cognition) function, and quality of life (QOL) in patients with Parkinson's disease (PD).
METHODS: A systematic search in 7 electronic databases targeted clinical studies evaluating TCQ for individuals with PD published through August 2016. Meta-analysis was used to estimate effect sizes (Hedges's g) and publication bias for randomized controlled trials (RCTs). Methodological bias in RCTs was assessed by two raters.
RESULTS: Our search identified 21 studies, 15 of which were RCTs with a total of 735 subjects. For RCTs, comparison groups included no treatment (n = 7, 47%) and active interventions (n = 8, 53%). Duration of TCQ ranged from 2 to 6 months. Methodological bias was low in 6 studies, moderate in 7, and high in 2. Fixed-effect models showed that TCQ was associated with significant improvement on most motor outcomes (UPDRS III [ES = -0.444, p < 0.001], balance [ES = 0.544, p < 0.001], Timed-Up-and-Go [ES = -0.341, p = 0.005], 6 MW [ES = -0.293, p = 0.06], falls [ES = -0.403, p = 0.004], as well as depression [ES = -0.457, p = 0.008] and QOL [ES = -0.393, p < 0.001], but not cognition [ES = -0.225, p = 0.477]). I(2) indicated limited heterogeneity. Funnel plots suggested some degree of publication bias.
CONCLUSION: Evidence to date supports a potential benefit of TCQ for improving motor function, depression and QOL for individuals with PD, and validates the need for additional large-scale trials.
Article Published Date : May 24, 2017
Source: By  R Song, W Grabowska, M Park, K Osypiuk, G P Vergara-Diaz, P Bonato, J M Hausdorff, M Fox, L R Sudarsky, E Macklin, P M Wayne
Parkinsonism Relat Disord. 2017 May 25. Epub 2017 May 25. PMID: 28602515

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