External qigong for chronic pain

Ann Vincent, Jamia Hill, Kelly M. Kruk, Stephen S. Cha, Brent A. Bauer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


External qigong as a pharmacotherapy adjunct was investigated in 50 subjects with chronic pain (pain lasting > 3 months with pain score of < 3 on 010 numeric analog scale) who presented to a qigong healing center. Participants were randomized to receive either external qigong treatment (EQT) or equivalent attention time (EAT) in weekly 30-min sessions for four consecutive weeks. Outcomes were assessed before and after sessions. The primary outcome measure was intensity of pain by a 10-cm visual analog scale used to rate all pain severity measurements. At 8-week follow-up, participants were contacted by telephone and mailed a questionnaire. Most had experienced pain for > 5 years (66%); the rest, for > 3 to 5 years (8%), 1 to 3 years (10%), or < 1 year but > 3 months (10%). The most frequent concomitant diagnoses were multifactorial (26%), osteoarthritis (18%), and low back pain (12%). Most patients were also receiving other treatments (74%); none previously had EQT. Participants were randomly assigned to EQT (n = 26) or EAT (n = 24). These groups had no significant differences at baseline except for prior awareness of qigong (EQT 31% vs. EAT 63%; p = 0.025). Compared to the EAT group, EQT participants had a significant decrease in pain intensity in the 2nd (p = 0.003), 3rd (p < 0.001), and 4th weeks of treatment (p = 0.003). At week 8, these differences in overall decreased pain intensity persisted but were not statistically significant.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)695-703
Number of pages9
JournalAmerican Journal of Chinese Medicine
Issue number4
StatePublished - 2010


  • Osteoarthritis
  • Pain
  • Pain Clinics
  • Pain Measurement
  • Pain, Intractable

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Complementary and alternative medicine


Dive into the research topics of 'External qigong for chronic pain'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this