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Public Health Article

Tai chi for essential hypertension: A systematic review of randomized controlled trials



Review Quality Rating: 10 (strong)

Citation: Zhong D, Li J, Yang H, Li Y, Huang Y, Xiao Q, et al. (2020). Tai chi for essential hypertension: A systematic review of randomized controlled trials. Current Hypertension Reports, 22(3), 25.

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Abstract

PURPOSE OF REVIEW: To investigate the effectiveness and safety of Tai Chi for essential hypertension (EH).

RECENT FINDINGS: A total of 9 databases were searched from inception to January 1, 2020. Randomized controlled trials (RCTs) investigating the effectiveness and safety of Tai Chi for EH were included. Study selection, data extraction, and quality assessment were performed independently by 2 reviewers. A total of 28 RCTs involving 2937 participants were ultimately included in this systematic review. Meta-analysis showed that, compared with health education/no treatment, other exercise or antihypertensive drugs (AHD), Tai Chi showed statistically significant difference in lowering systolic blood pressure (SBP) and diastolic blood pressure (DBP). The trial sequential analysis suggested that the evidence in our meta-analysis was reliable and conclusive. Subgroup analyses of Tai Chi vs. AHD demonstrated Tai Chi for hypertension patients < 50 years old showed greater reduction in SBP and DBP. Intervention of 12-24 weeks could significantly lower SBP and DBP. Among 28 included RCTs, 2 RCTs reported that no adverse events occurred. The quality of evidence for the blood pressure (BP) of Tai Chi vs. AHD was moderate, and DBP of Tai Chi vs. health education (HE)/ no treatment (NT) was high. Other outcome indicators were considered low or very low quality according to the Grading of Recommendations Assessment, Development and Evaluation (GRADE). Tai Chi could be recommended as an adjuvant treatment for hypertension, especially for patients less than 50 years old. However, due to poor methodological qualities of included RCTs and high heterogeneity, this conclusion warrants further investigation.


Keywords

Adolescents (13-19 years), Adults (20-59 years), Behaviour Modification (e.g., provision of item/tool, incentives, goal setting), Chronic Diseases, Community, Home, Meta-analysis, Physical Activity, Seniors (60+ years)

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