Sahaja Yoga in the management of moderate to severe asthma: a randomised controlled trial

University of New South Wales, Kensington, New South Wales, Australia
Thorax (Impact Factor: 8.56). 02/2002; 57(2):110-5. DOI: 10.1136/thorax.57.2.110
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Sahaja Yoga is a traditional system of meditation based on yogic principles which may be used for therapeutic purposes. A study was undertaken to assess the effectiveness of this therapy as an adjunctive tool in the management of asthma in adult patients who remained symptomatic on moderate to high doses of inhaled steroids.
A parallel group, double blind, randomised controlled trial was conducted. Subjects were randomly allocated to Sahaja yoga and control intervention groups. Both the yoga and the control interventions required the subjects to attend a 2 hour session once a week for 4 months. Asthma related quality of life (AQLQ, range 0-4), Profile of Mood States (POMS), level of airway hyperresponsiveness to methacholine (AHR), and a diary card based combined asthma score (CAS, range 0-12) reflecting symptoms, bronchodilator usage, and peak expiratory flow rates were measured at the end of the treatment period and again 2 months later.
Twenty one of 30 subjects randomised to the yoga intervention and 26 of 29 subjects randomised to the control group were available for assessment at the end of treatment. The improvement in AHR at the end of treatment was 1.5 doubling doses (95% confidence interval (CI) 0.0 to 2.9, p=0.047) greater in the yoga intervention group than in the control group. Differences in AQLQ score (0.41, 95% CI -0.04 to 0.86) and CAS (0.9, 95% CI -0.9 to 2.7) were not significant (p>0.05). The AQLQ mood subscale did improve more in the yoga group than in the control group (difference 0.63, 95% CI 0.06 to 1.20), as did the summary POMS score (difference 18.4, 95% CI 0.2 to 36.5, p=0.05). There were no significant differences between the two groups at the 2 month follow up assessment.
This randomised controlled trial has shown that the practice of Sahaja yoga does have limited beneficial effects on some objective and subjective measures of the impact of asthma. Further work is required to understand the mechanism underlying the observed effects and to establish whether elements of this intervention may be clinically valuable in patients with severe asthma.

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Available from: Ramesh Manocha, Jul 06, 2014
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    • "Among the different types of physical exercise, yoga is becoming more and more important in western civilizations. This is an Indian millenary technique which is aimed at flexibility, muscle strength and meditation, and it includes respiratory exercises which enhance pulmonary capacities (Gopal et al., 1973; Ray and Sinha, 2001; Bernardi et al., 2002; Manocha et al., 2002; Cooper et al., 2003; Mandanmoha et al., 2003). However, the majority of those studies analysed young adults and children, especially those suffering from asthma. "
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    ABSTRACT: Aging produces several respiratory limitations and reduces tolerance to physical efforts, sometimes leading to pulmonary diseases in the elderly. The literature draws attention to the possible benefits of Yoga practice among the elderly, presenting evidence for significant improvements in quality of life. It was hypothesized that yoga practice can improve respiratory function in the elderly. The effects of a yoga program on pulmonary volumes and respiratory muscle strength were verified in 36 elderly women divided into a yoga group [YG] (63.1 ± 13.3 years of age) and a control group (61.0 ± 6.9 years of age). Maximal inspiratory and expiratory pressure (MIP and MEP) were assessed by a manovacuometer and tidal volume (VT), vital capacity (VC) and minute ventilation (VE) were measured by a ventilometer. The program comprised 65 min sessions, 3 times/week during 12 weeks. The heart rate and respiratory rate decreased significantly in the YG (76-39 ± 8-03 vs. 74-61±10.26 bpm and 18.61 ± 3.15 vs. 16.72 ± 3.12 resp/min, respectively). In the YG, VT and VE increased significantly (0.55 ± 0.22 vs. 0.64 ± 0.2 ml and 9.19 ± 2.39 vs. 10.05 ± 2.11 ml, respectively), as well as VC (1.48 ± 0.45 vs. 2.03 ± 0.72 ml). Improvements were also found in MIP and MEP in the YG (62.17 ± 14.77 vs. 73.06 ± 20.16 cmH2O and 80.56 ± 23.94 vs. 86.39 ± 20.16 cmH2O, respectively). It was concluded that a 12-week yoga program significantly improves pulmonary function of aged women
    Journal of Human Kinetics 11/2014; 43:177-184. DOI:10.2478/hukin-2014-0103 · 0.70 Impact Factor
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    • "Steroids, b2-agonists Pink City Lung Exerciser 2 times per day home use for 6 months (1) Placebo Pink City Lung Exerciser 2 times per day home use for 6 months; (2) eucapnic buteyko technique 2 hour sessions 2 times per day home use for 6 months 3 months, 6 months Steroid use, symptom score diary, SF-36, AQLQ, FEV 1 , FVC Flüge et al, 23 1994 36/21-33/44.8/61.1/NR Usual care 15 3-hour sessions of yoga (postures, breathing, cleansing, relaxation) during 12 weeks (1) 15 3-hour sessions of breathing exercises for 12 weeks; (2) usual care for 3 weeks 1 month, 2 months, 3 months, 4 months VC, FEV 1 , TLC, FRC, RV, R tot , adverse events Manocha et al, 24 2002 "
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    ABSTRACT: Although yoga is frequently used by patients with asthma, its efficacy in alleviating asthma remains unclear. To systematically assess and meta-analyze the available data on efficacy and safety of yoga in alleviating asthma. MEDLINE/PubMed, Scopus, the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials, PsycINFO, CAM-Quest, CAMbase, and IndMED were searched through January 2014. Randomized controlled trials of yoga for patients with asthma were included if they assessed asthma control, symptoms, quality of life, and/or pulmonary function. For each outcome, standardized mean differences (SMDs) or risk ratios (RRs) and 95% confidence intervals (CIs) were calculated. Risk of bias was assessed using the Cochrane tool. Fourteen randomized controlled trials with 824 patients were included. Evidence for effects of yoga compared with usual care was found for asthma control (RR, 10.64; 95% CI, 1.98 to 57.19; P = .006), asthma symptoms (SMD, -0.37; 95% CI, -0.55 to -0.19; P < .001), quality of life (SMD, 0.86; 95% CI, 0.39 to 1.33; P < .001), peak expiratory flow rate (SMD, 0.49; 95% CI, 0.32 to 0.67; P < .001), and ratio of forced expiratory volume in 1 second to forced vital capacity (SMD, 0.50; 95% CI, 0.24 to 0.75; P < .001); evidence for effects of yoga compared with for psychological interventions was found for quality of life (SMD, 0.61; 95% CI, 0.22 to 0.99; P = .002) and peak expiratory flow rate (SMD, 2.87; 95% CI, 0.14 to 5.60; P = .04). No evidence for effects of yoga compared with sham yoga or breathing exercises was revealed. No effect was robust against all potential sources of bias. Yoga was not associated with serious adverse events. Yoga cannot be considered a routine intervention for asthmatic patients at this point. It can be considered an ancillary intervention or an alternative to breathing exercises for asthma patients interested in complementary interventions.
    Annals of allergy, asthma & immunology: official publication of the American College of Allergy, Asthma, & Immunology 04/2014; 112(6). DOI:10.1016/j.anai.2014.03.014 · 2.75 Impact Factor
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    • "Studies of the mental silence approach to meditation have been conducted in a range of health conditions [13]. Rigorous randomised trials using active control groups have demonstrated significant effects on mood and airway hyperresponsiveness in asthma sufferers [14] and on depressive mood and work stress in fulltime workers [15]. In other studies, promising effects have been shown in depression/anxiety [16] [17], attention deficit and hyperactivity disorder [18], menopausal hot flashes [19], and epilepsy [20]. "
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    ABSTRACT: Background. There is very little data describing the long-term health impacts of meditation. Aim. To compare the quality of life and functional health of long-term meditators to that of the normative population in Australia. Method. Using the SF-36 questionnaire and a Meditation Lifestyle Survey, we sampled 343 long-term Australian Sahaja Yoga meditation practitioners and compared their scores to those of the normative Australian population. Results. Six SF-36 subscales (bodily pain, general health, mental health, role limitation-emotional, social functioning, and vitality) were significantly better in meditators compared to the national norms whereas two of the subscales (role limitation-physical, physical functioning) were not significantly different. A substantial correlation between frequency of mental silence experience and the vitality, general health, and especially mental health subscales (P < 0.005) was found. Conclusion. Long-term practitioners of Sahaja yoga meditation experience better functional health, especially mental health, compared to the general population. A relationship between functional health, especially mental health, and the frequency of meditative experience (mental silence) exists that may be causal. Evidence for the potential role of this definition of meditation in enhancing quality of life, functional health and wellbeing is growing. Implications for primary mental health prevention are discussed.
    Evidence-based Complementary and Alternative Medicine 05/2012; 2012:350674. DOI:10.1155/2012/350674 · 1.88 Impact Factor
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