Author: Ingrid Menkyova1, Dominika Stastna2, Klara Novotna2, Marian Saling3, Iveta Lisa3, Tomas Vesely4, Darina Slezakova3, Peter Valkovic5
1 Second Department of Neurology, Faculty of Medicine, Comenius University Bratislava, University Hospital Bratislava, Slovakia; Department of Neurology and Centre of Clinical Neuroscience, First Faculty of Medicine, Charles University in Prague and General University Hospital, Prague, Czechia.
2 Department of Neurology and Centre of Clinical Neuroscience, First Faculty of Medicine, Charles University in Prague and General University Hospital, Prague, Czechia.
3 Second Department of Neurology, Faculty of Medicine, Comenius University Bratislava, University Hospital Bratislava, Slovakia.
4 Department of Information and Communication Technologies in Medicine, Faculty of Biomedical Engineering, Czech Technical University in Prague, Czechia.
5 Second Department of Neurology, Faculty of Medicine, Comenius University Bratislava, University Hospital Bratislava, Slovakia; Centre of Experimental Medicine, Institute of Normal and Pathological Physiology, Slovak Academy of Sciences, Bratislava, Slovakia. Electronic address: email@example.com.
Conference/Journal: Explore (NY)
Date published: 2023 Aug 6
Other: Special Notes: doi: 10.1016/j.explore.2023.07.011. , Word Count: 405
One of the most debilitating problems encountered by people with multiple sclerosis (MS) is the loss of balance and coordination. Our study aimed to comprehensively evaluate the effectiveness of one year of Tai-chi exercise in patients with MS using both subjective and objective methods, including posturography.
This was a single-group longitudinal one-year study performed from the 1st of January 2019 to the 1st of January 2020. The primary outcomes of interest were the Mini-Balance Evaluation Systems Test (Mini-BESTest) and static posturography measures as objective methods to detect subtle changes associated with postural control/balance impairment. Secondary outcomes were measures of depression, anxiety, cognitive performance, and quality of life. All objective and subjective parameters were assessed four times: at baseline, and after three, six and 12 months of regular Tai-chi training. The difference was calculated as a subtraction of baseline values from every timepoint value for each measurement. If the normality test was passed, parametric one-sample t-test was used, if failed, Wilcoxon signed ranks test was used to test the difference between the baseline and each timepoint. Alpha was set to 0.017 using Bonferroni correction for multiple comparisons.
Out of 25 patients with MS enrolled, 15 women with MS (mean age 44.27 years) were included for statistical analyses after completing the 12-month program. After 12 months, significant improvements were found in all objective balance and gait tests: Mini-BESTest (p<0.001), static posturography measures (total area of the centre of foot pressure - TA; p = 0.015), 25 Feet Walk Test (25FWT; p = 0.001), anxiety (Beck Anxiety Inventory - BAI; p = 0.005) and cognition tests (Paced Auditory Serial Addition Test - PASAT; p = 0.003). Measures of depression (Beck Depression Inventory - BDI; p = 0.071), cognition (Symbol Digit Modalities Test - SDMT; p = 0.079), and health-related quality of life (European Quality of Life 5-Dimensions Questionnaire - EQ-5D-5L; p = 0.095) showed a trend of improvement but were not significant, which could be the result of a small sample and increased bias due the type II error.
According to these preliminary results, this study indicates the possible beneficial effects of long-term Tai-chi training on patients with MS. Although these findings need to be confirmed by further studies with a larger sample of participants of both genders and require more rigorous randomized controlled trials (RCT) design, our findings support the recommendation of regular and long-term Tai-chi exercise in patients with MS.
Gov identifier (retrospectively registered):
Keywords: Balance; Multiple sclerosis; Non-pharmacological interventions; Physical therapy; Posturography; Tai chi Chuan.
PMID: 37596158 DOI: 10.1016/j.explore.2023.07.011