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Yoga as a complementary therapy improves pulmonary functions in patients of bronchial asthma: A randomized controlled trial

Pushpa K, Divya Sharma.

Abstract
Background: Asthma is one of the major non-communicable diseases affecting mainly urban population worldwide. With increasing traffic, there is upsurge in air pollution levels in Bengaluru, resulting in increase in number of bronchial asthma cases. The purpose of the study was to know the effectiveness of yoga on lung functions so as to reduce the disease burden in bronchial asthma patients.

Aims and Objectives: The aim of the study was to record pulmonary function test (PFT) in (1) Group A - 30 bronchial asthma patients practicing yoga along with pharmacological treatment and (2) Group B - 30 bronchial asthma patients who are only on pharmacological treatment and to compare the results between the two groups at baseline, after 4 weeks, and after 8 weeks.

Materials and Methods: Study included 60 mild-moderate bronchial asthma patients, divided into Group A and Group B. PFT was done, forced expiratory volume in one second (FEV1), forced vital capacity (FVC), FEV1/FVC, peak expiratory flow rate (PEFR), and forced expiratory flow rate 2575% (FEF25-75) were measured using MEC PFT and airway resistance (RAW) and specific airway conductance (sGAW) were measured using body plethysmograph at baseline, after 4 weeks and after 8 weeks in both the groups.

Results: Group A showed progressive improvement in FEV1, FVC, FEV1/FVC, PEFR, FEF25-75, and sGAW (P < 0.001) and a significant reduction in RAW after 4th and 8th weeks of yoga training. Group B showed no significant change in FEV1, FVC, FEV1/FVC, PEFR, FEF25-75, RAW, and sGAW after 4 weeks and 8 weeks.

Conclusion: Yoga can be used as adjunctive therapy as it significantly improves lung functions in mild-to-moderate bronchial asthma. Regular practice of yoga leads to improved quality of life in bronchial asthmatics.

Key words: Airway Resistance; Asthma; Pranayama; Pulmonary Functions; Yoga



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