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TCM Qigong Self-Healing in Cancer Recovery

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TCM Qigong Self-Healing in Cancer Recovery

  1. 1. 1 TCM Qigong & Self-Healing in Cancer Recovery 中医气功激发生物能和自愈力在癌症康复中的作用 Kevin W Chen, Ph.D. MPH Center for Integrative Medicine University of Maryland School of Medicine Email: kchen@som.umaryland.edu
  2. 2. 2 What Is Qigong? -- the Term  Pronounced as “Chi Kung.”  Qi = vital energy, breath of life.  Gong = skill or achievement.  Qigong is a general term for various forms of traditional Chinese mind-body exercises and therapies.  The practice has a history of 3,000+ years  Had many other names in the history
  3. 3. 3 Other Names of Qigong  Tu-na ( 吐纳 ) - exhalation and inhalation,  Dao-yin ( 导引 ) - guiding and conducting exercise  An-qiao ( 按蹻 ) - massaging/stepping on the body  Xiu-lian ( 修炼 ) - cultivating and refining  Jing-zuo ( 静坐 ) - tranquil sitting, sit meditation  Yang-sheng ( 养生 ) – life nurturing  Cun-si ( 存思 ) - mind-visualization  Guan-xiang ( 观想 ) - observing-imagination  Xing-qi ( 行气 ) - circulating Qi
  4. 4. 4 Example Relics of Qigong  Right: A jade pendant describes special technique of qi meditation & possible reactions (around 600 B.C.) • Left: a painted pottery jar with a sculpture in human shape on a standing meditation post, and gulping Qi… (around 3000 B.C.)
  5. 5. 5 Concept of Qi in TCM  Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) posits the existence of a subtle energy (Qi) circulating throughout human body.  Good health is result of a free-flow, well- balanced qi system, while sickness or pain is the result of qi blockage or unbalanced qi.  All TCM therapies, herb, cupping, acupuncture, massage & Qigong, based on this perspective.  The same concept can be found in other cultures: Ki (Japan), Prana (India), Mana (Hawaii & Philippines), and OD (German).
  6. 6. 6 Textbook Definition of Qigong “The skill of body-mind exercises that integrate body, breath and mind adjustments into one.” 1. Contents: 3 adjustments 2. Purpose: Integrate 3 adjustments into oneness 3. Classification of discipline: It’s body-mind exercise – both physiology and psychology 4. Category of knowledge: operational skill or technique
  7. 7. Qigong and Healing  Qigong practice has health benefits. o Most people agree.  Qigong therapy can heal diseases o Most skeptic… or don’t know  Qigong practice can help cancer recovery! o Most people not sure… 7
  8. 8. 8 Medical Qigong 医疗气 功  Emphasize how to use vital energy (qi) to help take control of illnesses/diseases, and how to prevent them.  Influenced by Daoism philosophy but developed independently mostly by TCM practitioners.  Historically, most famous TCM doctors were also good qigong practitioners (e.g. Hua Tuo; Li Shizhen).  Guide medical practitioners to use inner qi for diagnosing, healing and preventing diseases.  Concept qi & qigong techniques--foundation of TCM
  9. 9. 9 Ancient Medical Qigong Book  General Treatise on Etiology and Symptomology of Various Diseases ( 诸病源候论 )-- 610 A.D.  The oldest specialized medical text to explore etiology & pathogenesis.  50 volumes cover 67 subjects and 1739 items/entries..  No herbal formula or acupuncture  But recorded 213 various ‘Daiyin movements’ (Qigong) for 110 different symptoms or diseases!
  10. 10. 10 Variation in Medical Qigong  Although Qigong is considered as a self- healing therapy (see definition), the emission of Qi (or external Qi therapy) has always been part of the medical qigong practice so as to help patients to regain health or qi balance.  Need to distinguish between internal qigong training and external Qi therapy
  11. 11. 11 Internal Qigong Practice  Self practice or cultivation to achieve mind-body-breathing integration.  Major part of Qigong therapy.  Involve guided imagery, breathing skills, relaxation, inward attention, body posture, mindfulness training through three adjustments.  Three basic forms: dynamic, static, and standing post.
  12. 12. 12 External Qi Therapy  EQT -- Qigong practitioner direct or emit his Qi energy, intention, or bio-info to help other regain health.  Practiced through use of Qi (vital energy), or Yi (intention or mind) therapy, or a combination of the two.  Most schools of medical Qigong teach both techniques.
  13. 13. 13 Study of External Qi  The physical nature of Qi remains as yet unproven, there are some intriguing reports suggesting possibility of physical, biophysical or biochemical alterations induced by EQT or “Qi-emission.”  Chen (2004) “Analytic review of measuring external qi in China” -- presents a lot of studies that applied physical, chemical, biological and life detectors in verifying the existence of external qi.  There is a small but growing body of scientific evidence that suggests the physical existence of Qi, and the healing power of Qigong therapy Chen (2004), Alternative Therapies in Health and Medicine, 10(4): 38-50
  14. 14. 14 What is found in external qi? Studies suggest 3 components in “external qi” healing process: 1. Matter – such as mm micro- wave, VLF electromagnetic field, photon, particle, etc. 2. Energy – Gamma ray, far- infrared, 3. Information – bi-directional effect on bacteria growth
  15. 15. TCM View of Cancer  A slowing or stasis of the Qi-blood flow in the body (deficiency of Zheng Qi)  Sometimes, there may be external toxin, but only working through internal dysfunction or imbalance.  Treatments focus on cultivating Zheng (qi) and dispelling Xie (toxin, evil) 15
  16. 16. 16 Qigong and Cancer Recovery  Huge literature (many in Chinese).  Mostly observational studies on cancer patients before and after qigong practice  Some randomized controlled trials in recent literature  Many positive in-vitro and in-vivo studies of external qi therapies for inhibiting cancer growth  Many Qigong schools or clinics do not take patients with cancer openly due to high mortality rate….  Two Qigong forms specifically target cancer: Guo-Lin New Qigong and Taiji Five-Element Qigong. Both have reported many successful cases.
  17. 17. Chen & Yueng, 2002, Integrative Cancer Therapy, 1, 345-370 17 Qigong Therapy for Cancer  Chen & Yueng (2002) reviewed 50+ research studies of qigong therapy for cancer in the past 20 years.  Group treated with qigong had significant more improvement or a better survival rate than those treated with conventional method, with less side effects.  The cancer cells used in-vitro and in-vivo include breast cancer, erythroleukemia (K562), leukemia, CNE-2, SGC- 7901 gastric adenocarcinoma, spleen cells, lung tumor cells (LA-795), etc.  Most studies demonstrated the inhibitory effect of qigong on the growth of cancer cells in comparison with the control and sham-treated groups.
  18. 18. 18 EQT on Transplanted Hepatocarcinoma in Mice  30 nude mice injected w/ hepatocarcinoma cells.  randomly assigned into 3 groups: control, sham & external qigong treatment.  EQT towards mouse cage (10-15 am away) 10 minutes every other day, a total of 4 sessions.  Mice sacrificed 72 hrs after last EQT. Tumor mass isolated & weighted.  The three repeated trials showed, compared with control the tumor growth-inhibitory rates of EQT group were 70%, 80%, and 79%, respectively (p < 0.0001). Chen et al. 1997, Asian Medicine, 11, 36-38
  19. 19. 19 Fig 1. Inhibitory Effect of EQT on Live Cancer in Mice 0 0.5 1 1.5 2 Trial 1 Trial 2 Trial 3 TumorWeight(g) Control Sham Qigong
  20. 20. 20 Pictures of Electron Microscopy  A (2200x) shows cell shrinkage, some with nuclear condensation; some apoptotic bodies in cells.  B (8000x) shows apoptotic cells, karyorrhexis, nuclear fragments, and cytoplasmic aggregation.  D (6000x) shows apoptosis: cell shrink, pyknosis and cytoplamic aggregation.  E (3900x) shows clustered apoptotic bodies in intercellular space.
  21. 21. 21 Inhibition of Cell Culture Growth  Study of EQT inhibiting breast cancer cell growth (PPT-I expression).  4 BC cell lines (BC-123; BC-125; BC-HT-20; BC- T47d) were grown in 4 conditions.  All plates were re-incubated for 16 hours. Total RNA was extracted to determine the levels of beta-PPT-I.  Treatment: Qigong (10Treatment: Qigong (10 min), sham (10 min),min), sham (10 min), incubator control & roomincubator control & room temperature control.temperature control.
  22. 22. Chen & Yueng (2002). Integrative Concer Therapies. 1(4):345-370 22 Results of Our In-vitro Study  Compared to sham- treated cells, in all 8 trials (4 BC cells in two trials) the Qi- treated cells had slower growth than all sham group (p = . 0038 in cumulative binomial probability distribution). Effects of External Qi on PPT-I Expression on BC-HT-20 Cells 0 20 40 60 80 100 120 Control 1 Control 2 Sham Qigong Treatment CountofMoleculesof totalRNA Trial 1 Trial 2
  23. 23. Bengston & Krinsley, 2000, Journal of Scientific Exploration, 14: 353-364. 23 “Laying On of Hands” on Transplanted Breast Cancer in Mice (U.S.)  Bengston & Krinsley (2000) tried to apprentice “laying on of hands” technique on transplanted breast cancer in mice.  First study: 5 mice on each group.  Cancer: mommary adenocarcinoma (H2712).  Host strain: C3H/HeJ, which had a predicted 100% fatality in 14 to 27 days.  Attempted to observe the prolonged life…
  24. 24. 24 Laying on Hands for Breast Cancer  Bengston treated the mice 1 hour a day for a month.  The tumors developed a “blackened area”, then ulcerated, imploded, and closed.  The treated mice survived 100%! And lived their normal life cycle.  Three replications using skeptical volunteers in different labs produced an overall cure rate of 87.9% in 33 mice.
  25. 25. 25 Laying on of hands for BC in mice
  26. 26. 26 Significant Finding:  Resonance effects on control mice…  On-site control survival rate was not 0%, but 69% in 2000 report, and 80.5% in 2007 report (tx group at 91.7%).  Replicated in four trials!  Off-site control survival rate remained at 0%. Bengston & Moga, J of Alter & Comp Med, 2007; 13(3): 317-327
  27. 27. 27 Summary of Remission Patterns from Laying-on-hands study 87.9 69.2 0 0 10 20 30 40 50 60 70 80 90 %Remission Experiment Control on-site Control off-site
  28. 28. 28 More Exciting Finding from Laying-on-Hands Study  Re-injections of the same breast cancer into the mice after remission did not take their lives.  It suggests a stimulated immunological response to the bioenergy treatment.  If this immune response is transferable, we have a cure for this type of breast cancer – found out by a sociology professor!
  29. 29. Review of Clinical Studies  Oh et al (2013) critical review of RCTs in Medical Qigong for cancer patients: positive improvement for quality of life, mood and fatigue parameters.  Zeng et al. (2014), a systematic review of health benefits of Qigong for cancer (13 RCTs): Qigong had positive effects on QoL, fatigue, immune function and cortisol level.  Lee et al (2007), a systematic review of controlled trials (9 studies)– poor study quality, related to palliative supportive care, not as a curative treatment. Evidence inconclusive. 29
  30. 30. Recent Clinical Studies  Chen et al (2013, Cancer), RCT (n=95 BC pts), Guolin Qigong 6 wks; Qigong group had less depress (p < .05), less fatigue (p < .01) & better QoL (p < .05).  Oh et al. (2010), RCT (n=162), medical qigong for 10 weeks, Qigong improved QoL (p < .05), fatigue (p < . 001), and mood disturbance (p = 0.02).  Bower et al. (2015, Cancer), (n=71), Mindfulness meditation, RCT for BC survivors, reduced perceived stress (p < .01), depressive symptom (p = 0.09), & reductions in proinflammatory gene expression (p < . 01) & inflammatory signaling (p < .01). 30
  31. 31. Successful Case Study  Yun Liao – recurrent breast cancer metastasized to bone (surgery in Aug. & Nov. 1991, metastasized in 1993)  Doctor told no hospital bed for her since the situation was too late to treat….  Age 52 when first coming to Qigong class in 1993  Practiced Five-element Qigong for 8 months….. 31
  32. 32. Case Study (Yun Liao)  ECT whole body scan in Nov. 1993 showed significant improvement  ECT in 1995 showed no sign of cancer metastasis….  She is still living and healthy today; volunteer to teach other cancer patients qigong, with 800+ students in Liu Zhou. 32
  33. 33. Successful Case Study  Manli Liu – Progressive brain cancer, malignant intracerebral glioma (1994)  Age 32 when coming to qigong in 1994  before Gamma ray-therapy (14 sessions), tumor grew to the size of 4.3x3.6x3.9cm.  Started qigong practice in Dec. 1994,  Two months later, tumor size 2.5 x 2.2  One and half a year later, her seventh MRI showed no sign of Glioma…. 33
  34. 34. Successful Case Study  Maoxun SHEN, recurrent liver cancer  Initial diagnosis of liver cancer in 1989, underwent three liver surgeries in 1990, 1991, & 1992…  The 4th recurrence of liver cancer found in Sept. 1992, CT show 2.5 x 2.5 cm tumor in right lobe…  Age 60 when fist coming to qigong class in 1992  Practice TFQ intensively for a few months, the tumor became smaller; by Jan 27th , 1993, Ultrasonic scan found no sign of tumor in liver…  Lived a healthy retirement life. 34
  35. 35. 35 Case Study of Qigong Healing  Mr. T, a NJ psychologist, had suffered from hypertension, cardiac problem, hay fever, allergy, asthma and some permanent injuries caused by car accident for long, plus elevated PSA (12)….  Took 8 medications daily before qigong therapy  Attending a 20-day intensive qigong training and Bigu (fasting),  Felt confident enough to stop taking all medications. Soon after, his PSA index back to normal; Blood pressure dropped from 220/120 with medicine to 120/80; asthma & allege gone, all other symptoms disappeared.  Pain caused by auto accident also disappeared. Chen & Turner, 2004, Journal of Alternative & Complementary Medicine, 10. 159-162
  36. 36. 36 How Qigong Works for Cancer? -- A long way to go….  Qigong helps reducing stress hormones (cortisol)  Qigong practice can improve immune functions – confirmed by in-vitro, in-vivo and human studies  Qigong practice may increase micro-circulation functions (more efficient metabolism)  Qi energy may direct turn off the cancer cells and produce apoptosis effect (in-vivo studies)  Qigong meditation can raise the pain threshold – confirmed by in-vivo and human studies
  37. 37. 37 Qigong Practice for Stress – Mind Management  Work on relaxing, or relieving your mind – less worry and less attachment….  “No-action” means less attached to things around that stress you…  An attitude change  Mindfulness -- through slow breathing and and mind-body exercise  Counting breaths method
  38. 38. 38 Qigong -- an Optimal Method for Stress Management  When breath-mind-body are integrated into “one”, you would breathe at the “resonant- frequency” – optimal state of autonomic nervous system!  TCM believes that “Qi” goes with “Yi” – when meditation with inward attention, one can gain energy, and recover much rapidly than other relaxation methods.
  39. 39. 39 Qigong Therapy for Pain Relief  Strong scientific evidence that relaxation and breathing techniques help relieving pain….  Qigong practice can raise the pain threshold – confirmed by in-vivo and human studies  An effective alternative for pain relief – either self application or external treatment.  E.g. reports on complete cure of arthritis and degenerated disc disease with qigong therapy.  Lee et al. (2007) reviewed 5 RCTs. The results not conclusive but very encouraging... Lee et al. Journal of Pain. 2007; 8(11):827-31
  40. 40. 40 More on Mechanisms Stress Response/Effect Qigong Effects  Heart rate to supply more blood quickly  heart rate,  HRV balanced blood supply (Ng & Tsang. 2009)  Immune system,  WBC count  NK activity, WBC count,  lymphocytes,  antibody (Ng & Tsang. 2009; Yang et al. 2008)  Blood pressure to supply blood efficiently  Blood pressure with adjusted autonomic nervous system (Paul- Labrodor et al. 2006)  Respiratory rate to get more oxygen  Respiratory rate -- calm down the entire body (Ng & Tsang. 2009)
  41. 41. 41 Explore Mechanisms (con’t) Stress Response/Effect Qigong Effects  Adrenaline and cortisol (hormone response)  cortisol,  melatonin (Lee et al. 2001; Guo 1996) Deficient production of insulin,  risk of obesity  Insulin resistance (Paul- Labrodor 2006)  total cholesterol (Ng & Tsang. 2009)  Interleukin (IL-6) indicator of Inflammation  Interleukin (IL-6) (Pace et al. 2009)  Negative mood/affect  Anxiety and depression (Ng & Tsang. 2009; Li et al. 2002)
  42. 42. Clinical Application of TCM Qigong Skills & Principles in Cancer Recovery OUTLINE Qigong Self Healing Retreat for Cancer Patients & Their Family 42
  43. 43. 43
  44. 44. Basic Rational  Current tx focus on cancer itself, but hardly on the environment that cultivated cancer growth in the first place  high relapse and failures  All therapies work with patients’ immune & self- recovery system;  Real health is not simple absence of disease/tumor, but a full mental and social balance & health.  Cancer-phobia is the leading cause of death among cancer patients, but no effective treatment so far…  We introduce the missed component in cancer therapy – YOU (the patient’s self-care & self-empowerment). 44
  45. 45. Search Help Within  Most people with cancer tend to search for help outside – the best doctors, the hospital, effective therapies, innovative drug(s)….  External help won’t work or cure cancer unless you change the internal environment, which offered the place to cultivate cancer growth at the first place…  Everyone is born a healer! We need reveal and activate that healer within! 45
  46. 46. 1. Attitude Adjustment (cognition)  Cancer is not your enemy!  Everyone may have tumor or carcinoma in the body during life time…  A diagnosed cancer is a warning, alert about your lifestyle, diet & internal environment! --- You need making changes….  It is the immune system & self-healing power that survive & cure the cancer.  Cancer could become your friend if you treated it in a right way… 46
  47. 47. Don’t Blindly-Believe( 迷信 ) In  What doctors said  What science knows  What Qigong master can do ================================  Believe in yourself, and in your self-healing potential! 47
  48. 48. 2. Focus on Reducing & Managing Stress/Anxiety (Mindset)  Practice mindfulness in daily life  Become mindful at any time by paying attention to breathing (RFB, Counting breath)  Be mindful of thought/emotion (acceptance, detachment, non-judgment, positive reframing)  Be mindful of body/spirit, mind-body connection, body used to facilitate stress reduction (mindful movement/exercise)  Build a positive, present and detached mindset 48
  49. 49. 3. Qigong Systems Designed for Fighting Cancer  Two evidence-based qigong systems o Chinese Taiji Five-element Qigong (Mostly meditative forms) o Guolin New Qigong (Anti-cancer Wellness Methods, walking qigong)  Cultivate mindfulness & energy in practice  Rapidly rebuild immune & healing system  Students learn both forms of Qigong and will leave with the skills to continue daily Qigong practice once returning home. 49
  50. 50. 4. Behavioral & Life-Style Reprogramming  Become a benefit-finder instead of fault-finder in daily life (daily gratitude ritual)  On relationship issues (patient, care-givers & other family & friends)  Emotion-soothing therapy  A healthier daily routine and schedule  Minimize exposure to electromagnetic fields  Diet and Nutrition – based on science and individualization! 50
  51. 51. 5. Evidence-Based Self-Healing Techniques  Nutrition therapy  Dietary supplements  Information water (Daoist healing)  Self-acupressure, introduce points to help pain and other symptoms,  Grounding for discharging positive ions and electron magnetic field, & gaining energy!  Energetic fasting as a therapy (turtle breathing and skin breathing) 51
  52. 52. Positive Feedback from Participants  “The healing Qigong workshop surpassed my expectations by a long shot. I came home with a renewed vigor, confidence, feeling of normalcy and hope that I had wanted!”  “I am on a quest for Total Health after stage III cancer, and I felt needing something more than what I was doing --- This is it!”  “Phenomenal! Passionate! True very best! Opened my mind, body & spirit!” “If I had this course 2 years ago, I would have taken less treatment and relied more on this practice.” -- A physician from Maryland. 52
  53. 53. 53 Selected References  Chen K, & Yeung R, 2002. "Exploratory studies of qigong therapy for cancer in China." Integrative Cancer Therapies. 1(4):345-370.  Chen K, 2004, “Analytic review of studies measuring external qi in China.’ Alter Therapies in Health & Medicine, 10(4): 38-50.  Chen K, “Qigong therapy for stress management.” Pp. 428-48 in Lehrer et al. (eds.) Principals & Practice of Stress Management, 3rd Ed. New York: Guilford Publications. 2007.  Chen KW, 2008. “Inhibitory effects of bio-energy therapies on cancer growth—An overview of recent laboratory studies in the U.S. and its implications in cancer treatment.” World Sciences and Technologies –Modernization of Traditional Chinese Medicine and Materia Medica; 10(4):144-152  Lee MS, Chen KW, Earnst E. 2010. Supportive Cancer Care with Qigong. Pp. 77-94 in W.C.S. Cho (ed.) Supportive Cancer Care with Chinese Medicine, London: Springer Science.
  54. 54. 54 More References  Zeng YC. et al. (2014). “Health benefits of qigong or tai chi for cancer patients: a systematic review and meta-analysis.” Complementary Therapies in Medicine. 22, 173-186.  Oh B. et al. (2012). “A critical review of the effects of medical qigong on quality of life, immune function, and survival in cancer patients.” Integrative Cancer Therapies. 11(2), 101- 110.  Chen Z. et al. (2013). “Qigong improves quality of life in women undergoing radiotherapy for breast cancer: Results of a randomized controlled trial.” Cancer, 119(9): 1690-8.  Bower et al. (2015). Mindfulness meditation for younger breast cancer survivors: a randomized controlled trial. Cancer, 121: 1231-40.  Oh B. et al. (2010). Impact of medical qigong on quality of life, fatigue, mood and inflammation in cancer patients: a randomized controlled trial. Ann Oncology, 21(3), 608-14.

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