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Biofeedback assisted diaphragmatic breathing and systematic relaxation versus propranolol

27 Dec

Researchers at the Himalayan Institute of Medical Sciences in Uttaranchal, India find in a randomized, controlled trial that biofeedback-assisted diaphramgmatic breathing plus systematic relaxation yields greater longterm benefits for migraine sufferers than propanalol..

Researchers at the Himalayan Institute of Medical Sciences in Uttaranchal, India, evaluated the effectiveness of biofeedback assisted diaphragmatic breathing and systematic relaxation for those suffering from migraine. They also compared the longterm benefits of these techniques with those of propranolol.

There were 192 migraine patients who were randomly distributed into two groups. The propranolol group received propranolol 80 mg/day while the biofeedback group received electromyogram (EMG) and temperature biofeedback assisted diaphragmatic breathing and systematic relaxation training, accompanied by home practice for 6 months.

Significant clinical response was seen with biofeedback in 66.66% and with propranolol in 64.58% of patients. Frequency, severity, duration of attacks and number of vomiting episodes were significantly reduced in both groups at 6 months. Inter-group differences were statistically insignificant.

However, at one year post-treatment, significantly less resurgence of migraine was seen in the biofeedback group as whole (9.37%) as compared to the propranolol group (53.22%).

The study concludes that biofeedback assisted diaphragmatic breathing and systematic relaxation were very useful in migraine and had significantly better long-term prophylactic effect than propranolol.

Kaushik R, Kaushik RM, Mahajan SK, Rajesh V. Biofeedback assisted diaphragmatic breathing and systematic relaxation versus propranolol in long term prophylaxis of migraine. Complement Ther Med. 2005 Sep;13(3):165-74. This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Citation: Kaushik R, Kaushik RM, Mahajan SK, Rajesh V. Biofeedback assisted diaphragmatic breathing and systematic relaxation versus propranolol in long term prophylaxis of migraine. Complement Ther Med. 2005 Sep;13(3):165-74. This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Belleruth Naparstek

Psychotherapist, author and guided imagery pioneer Belleruth Naparstek is the creator of the popular Health Journeys guided imagery audio series. Her latest book on imagery and posttraumatic stress, Invisible Heroes: Survivors of Trauma and How They Heal (Bantam Dell), won the Spirituality & Health Top 50 Books Award