ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year : 2021  |  Volume : 53  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 82-90

Effect of yoga therapy on psychological distress and quality of life in head-and-neck cancer patients undergoing radiotherapy


1 Department of Psycho-Oncology, HCG NCHRI Cancer Centre, Nagpur, Maharashtra, India
2 HCG NCHRI Cancer Centre, Nagpur, Maharashtra, India
3 Ex- Faculty, Community Medicine Department, Government Medical College, Nagpur, Maharashtra, India

Correspondence Address:
Anjali Mangesh Joshi
Khasra No. 50, 51, Mouja Wanjri, Bande Nawaz Nagar, Near Automotive Square, Kalamna Ring Road, Nagpur - 440 026, Maharashtra
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/ym.ym_97_21

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Context: Significant psychological morbidity with stress, depression, and anxiety has been reported in head-and-neck cancer (HNC) patients undergoing curative treatment. Failure to detect and treat psychological distress affects the outcomes of cancer therapies and decreases patients' quality of life (QoL). Studies have reported the benefits of yoga for anxiety, symptom severity, and distress in cancer patients. Aims: To identify the effects of yoga therapy on psychological distress and QoL in HNC patients undergoing radiotherapy. Settings and Design: Single-group, pretest posttest study in a clinical setting. Subjects and Methods: Psycho-Oncology Assessment Questionnaire, Distress Thermometer, European Organization for Research and Treatment of Cancer (EORTC) QLQ-C30 version 3.0, and EORTC QLQ-H&N35 questionnaires were administered to HNC patients (n = 22) before and after yoga intervention during 6 weeks of radiotherapy. The yoga intervention included loosening practices, asana, pranayama, and meditation. Statistical Analysis: Data were analyzed in statistical software - STATA, version 10.1 (2011). Results: Significant reduction in psychological distress (p = 0.0001) and improvement in the QoL (p = 0.0001) was observed. Significant improvement in physical, emotional, cognitive, social, and role functioning (p = 0.0001) was observed. Significant reduction in QLQ-C30 symptom subscale scores of insomnia, pain, appetite loss, and fatigue (p = 0.0001) was observed. Significant reduction in H&N35 symptom subscale scores related to swallowing, opening the mouth (p = 0.0001), trouble with social eating, trouble with social contact, and felt ill (p < 0.05) was observed. Conclusion: Yoga therapy intervention significantly reduced the psychological distress, improved the QoL, improved functions, and reduced symptoms in HNC patients undergoing radiotherapy. Further validation is required by conducting randomized controlled trials with a larger sample size.


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