Evid Based Complement Alternat Med. 2013 ;2013:357108 doi: 10.1155/2013/357108. 2013 Jun 20.

Yoga and mindfulness as therapeutic interventions for stroke rehabilitation: a systematic review

Lazaridou A, Philbrook P, Tzika AA.

Abstract

Aim. This paper reports a systematic review and critical appraisal of the evidence on the effectiveness of behavioral therapies such as yoga and mindfulness practices for stroke rehabilitation. Background. The experience of stroke can have a negative impact on both psychological and physical health and on quality of life. Yoga and relevant practices are promising therapies that have been used with patients with a variety of conditions. In order to draw conclusions on effectiveness for stroke patients, the evidence requires systematic assessment. Methods. A comprehensive search of major biomedical and complementary medicine databases was conducted. Relevant research was categorized by study type and appraised according to study design. Results. Five randomized controlled clinical trials and four single case studies were found. Additionally, one qualitative research study was identified. Studies reported positive results, including improvements in cognition, mood, and balance and reductions in stress. Modifications to different yoga practices make comparison between studies difficult, and a lack of controlled studies precludes any firm conclusions on efficacy. Conclusion. Yoga and mindfulness could be clinically valuable self-administered intervention options for stroke rehabilitation. Further research is needed to evaluate these specific practices and their suitability in stroke rehabilitation.

PMID: 23781259