Randomised clinical trial: yoga vs written self-care advice for ulcerative colitis

Publication Type:
Journal Article
Alimentary Pharmacology and Therapeutics, 2017, 45 (11), pp. 1379 - 1389
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© 2017 John Wiley & Sons Ltd Background: Perceived stress seems to be a risk factor for exacerbation of ulcerative colitis. Yoga has been shown to reduce perceived stress. Aims: To assess the efficacy and safety of yoga for improving quality of life in patients with ulcerative colitis. Methods: A total of 77 patients (75% women; 45.5 ± 11.9 years) with ulcerative colitis in clinical remission but impaired quality of life were randomly assigned to yoga (12 supervised weekly sessions of 90 min; n = 39) or written self-care advice (n = 38). Primary outcome was disease-specific quality of life (Inflammatory Bowel Disease Questionnaire). Secondary outcomes included disease activity (Rachmilewitz clinical activity index) and safety. Outcomes were assessed at weeks 12 and 24 by blinded outcome assessors. Results: The yoga group had significantly higher disease-specific quality of life compared to the self-care group after 12 weeks (Δ = 14.6; 95% confidence interval=2.6–26.7; P = 0.018) and after 24 weeks (Δ = 16.4; 95% confidence interval=2.5–30.3; P = 0.022). Twenty-one and 12 patients in the yoga group and in the self-care group, respectively, reached a clinical relevant increase in quality of life at week 12 (P = 0.048); and 27 and 17 patients at week 24 (P = 0.030). Disease activity was lower in the yoga group compared to the self-care group after 24 weeks (Δ = −1.2; 95% confidence interval=−0.1−[−2.3]; P = 0.029). Three and one patient in the yoga group and in the self-care group, respectively, experienced serious adverse events (P = 0.317); and seven and eight patients experienced nonserious adverse events (P = 0.731). Conclusions: Yoga can be considered as a safe and effective ancillary intervention for patients with ulcerative colitis and impaired quality of life. Trial registration: ClinicalTrials.gov identifier: NCT02043600.
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