The purpose of this study was to examine the impact of yoga on atrial fibrillation (AF) burden, quality of life (QoL), depression, and anxiety scores.
Yoga is known to have significant benefit on cardiovascular health. The effect of yoga in reducing AF burden is unknown.
This single-center, pre-post study enrolled patients with symptomatic paroxysmal AF with an initial 3-month noninterventional observation period followed by twice-weekly 60-min yoga training for next 3 months. AF episodes during the control and study periods as well as SF-36, Zung self-rated anxiety, and Zung self-rated depression scores at baseline, before, and after the study phase were assessed.
Yoga training reduced symptomatic AF episodes (3.8 ± 3 vs. 2.1 ± 2.6, p < 0.001), symptomatic non-AF episodes (2.9 ± 3.4 vs. 1.4 ± 2.0; p < 0.001), asymptomatic AF episodes (0.12 ± 0.44 vs. 0.04 ± 0.20; p < 0.001), and depression and anxiety (p < 0.001), and improved the QoL parameters of physical functioning, general health, vitality, social functioning, and mental health domains on SF-36 (p = 0.017, p < 0.001, p < 0.001, p = 0.019, and p < 0.001, respectively). There was significant decrease in heart rate, and systolic and diastolic blood pressure before and after yoga (p < 0.001).
In patients with paroxysmal AF, yoga improves symptoms, arrhythmia burden, heart rate, blood pressure, anxiety and depression scores, and several domains of QoL. (Yoga on Arrhythmia Burden and Quality of Life in Paroxysmal Atrial Fibrillation; NCT00798356)