- Fecal Incontinence
|Meditation and Yoga for Irritable Bowel Syndrome: A Randomized Clinical Trial
Am J Gastroenterol. 2022 Nov 25. doi: 10.14309/ajg.0000000000002052. Online ahead of print.
1Department of Community Health Sciences, Cumming School of Medicine, University of Calgary, Calgary, Canada.
2Arthur J.E. Child Chair, Department of Medicine, Cumming School of Medicine, University of Calgary, Calgary, Canada.
3Faculty of Health Disciplines, Athabasca University, Athabasca, Canada.
4Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, Department of Medicine, Cumming School of Medicine, University of Calgary, Calgary, Canada.
5Snyder Institute for Chronic Diseases, Cumming School of Medicine, University of Calgary, Calgary, Canada.
6Clinical Research Unit, Cumming School of Medicine, University of Calgary, Calgary, Canada.
Introduction: Delivered in person, yoga is effective in managing irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) symptoms. The evidence for efficacy, feasibility, and safety of virtually delivered yoga for patients with IBS is unknown.
Methods: Adults diagnosed with IBS were randomized to either Hatha yoga intervention of 8 weekly online classes delivered virtually or an advice-only control group and assessed at baseline and postintervention. We used an unadjusted ANOVA to determine differences between and within groups on the primary outcome (decrease of ≥50 points in IBS Symptom Severity Scale [IBS-SSS]) and secondary outcomes (quality of life, anxiety and depression, fatigue, somatic symptoms, perceived stress, COVID-19 stress, and self-compassion). We assessed feasibility through recruitment and attrition rates, adherence, participant satisfaction, and safety (i.e., adverse events).
Results: Seventy-nine people participated (mean age 45.4 years [SD = 14.0], 92% women, 20% attrition rate). IBS-SSS decreased significantly in the treatment group (Δchange = 54.7, P = 0.028), but not in the control group (Δchange = 22.6, P = 0.277). Fourteen patients (37%) in the yoga group reached a clinically relevant decrease of ≥50 points on the IBS-SSS postintervention compared with 8 patients (20%) in the control group (P = 0.242). No significant difference was found between groups in IBS-SSS score postintervention (P = 0.149), but significant differences in favor of the treatment group for quality of life (P = 0.030), fatigue (P = 0.035), and perceived stress (P = 0.040) were identified. The yoga program demonstrated feasibility. Intention to practice yoga decreased significantly in both groups from baseline to postintervention (P < 0.001). However, the decline in intention did not correlate with practice minutes.
Discussion: Virtually delivered yoga is safe and feasible, and effective in reducing IBS symptoms. Based on the primary end point, the intervention was not superior to an advice-only control group.