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Feasibility and potential benefits of partner-supported yoga on psychosocial and physical function among lung cancer patients.

Sullivan DR, Medysky ME, Tyzik AL, Dieckmann NF, Denfeld QE, Winters-Stone K. Feasibility and potential benefits of partner-supported yoga on psychosocial and physical function among lung cancer patients. Psycho-oncology. 2021 May 1; 30(5):789-793.

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OBJECTIVE: Patients with lung cancer experience significant declines in psychosocial and physical function during and after treatment that impact quality of life (QOL) and survival. Yoga is a potential strategy to mitigate functional decline among patients with lung cancer. METHODS: A single group 12-week pilot trial of low-moderate intensity yoga among patients with stage I-IV lung cancer and their partners (n  =  46; 23 patient-partner dyads) during cancer treatment from two hospital systems. Feasibility, acceptability, descriptive statistics, and Cohen d effect sizes were calculated at 6 and 12-weeks for psychosocial and physical outcomes using validated questionnaires and assessments. RESULTS: At 6 and 12-weeks, retention was 65% and withdrawals were mainly due to disease progression. Among study completers (n  =  26; 13 dyads) adherence was 80%. Comparing baseline to 12-week measurements, fatigue, depression symptoms, and sleep disturbance improved in 54% of participants for all three measures (Cohen''s d  =  0.40-0.53). QOL improved in 77% of participants (Cohen''s d  =  0.34). Upper and lower body flexibility, and lower body strength improved in 92%, 85% and 77% of participants, respectively (Cohen''s d  =  0.39-1.08). Six-minute walk test improved in 62% of participants an average of 32 meters (SD  =  11.3; Cohen''s d  =  0.17). No serious adverse events were reported. CONCLUSIONS: Among patients with stage I-IV lung cancer including active treatment, a 12-week partner-supported yoga program is feasible, acceptable, and improved psychosocial and physical function. Low-intensity yoga may be a complimentary approach to reduce the effects of cancer treatment, however, more research is needed to determine the efficacy of partner-supported yoga to mitigate functional decline.

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