Effects of progressive muscle relaxation on cancer patients with anxiety, depression and nausea: a systematic review and meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials




Poster session 2


Monday 24 October 2016 - 15:30 to 16:00


All authors in correct order:

Shih H1, Huang T2
1 Departmant of Nursing, China Medical University Hospital, Taiwan
2 Departmant of Nursing, College of Medicine and Nursing, HungKuang University, Taiwan
Presenting author and contact person

Presenting author:

Tsai-Wei Huang

Contact person:

Abstract text
Background: Progressive muscle relaxation (PMR) training has been used to improve anxiety, depression and chemotherapy‐related complications, like nausea and vomiting. However, the empirical effects of PMR training remain uncertain in cancer patients.

Objectives: This paper uses published randomized controlled and controlled clinical trials to analyze the effect of PMR training on improving anxiety, depression and nausea in cancer patients.

Methods: Systematic reviews and meta‐analysis were used. Searches were conducted in databases including MEDLINE, PubMed, The Cochrane Library, Embase, PsycINFO, Web of Science, CEPS, and the National Digital Library of Theses and Dissertations in Taiwan. The search focused on articles published up to February 2016. Based on inclusion and exclusion criteria, 11 articles addressing relevant randomized and controlled clinical trials were extracted. Eight of these provided sufficient data for pooling and analysis. The main outcomes assessed were anxiety, depression, and nausea.

Results: The eight studies showed that the PMR intervention had significant effects on anxiety and nausea, with respective effect sizes of 1.43 (95% confidence interval (CI) 0.57 to 2.29) and 0.84 (95% CI 0.18 to 1.49). There was no significant effect on depression, with an effect size of 0.36 (95% CI ‐0.26 to 0.99)

Conclusions: This study indicates that PMR training may improve anxiety and nausea in patients with cancer. Further study is needed to help healthcare staff advise patients better on the effects of PMR training in cancer patients.