Xu (1994) described and discussed the adverse effects of Qigong, which has been described as both a therapeutic practice as well as the “Chinese equivalent of Indian meditation”. The clinical consequences of inappropriate use of this technique has been described as the “Qigong deviation syndrome”, which has become a diagnostic term “now used widely in China” and is associated with a range of somatic and psychological disturbances. The commonest somatic symptoms include headaches, insomnia and discomfort caused by abdominal distension, while common psychological symptoms include anxiety, agitation and depression. Extreme psychological symptoms can include uncontrollable behaviours, psychosis and suicide.

For further reading regarding adverse effects arising from the use of Qigong, check Dr Ramesh Manocha’s blog.