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Yoga Intervention for Avoiding Complications in Patients with Locally Advanced Head and Neck Cancer Undergoing Concurrent Chemoradiation Therapy

Trial Status: Administratively Complete

This trial studies the feasibility of applying yoga intervention to avoid complications in patients with head and neck cancer that has spread to nearby tissue or lymph nodes (locally advanced) who are undergoing concurrent chemoradiation therapy. Yoga may help to avoid complications like difficulty moving head and neck. In addition, by practicing yoga, patients may learn breathing and relaxation techniques that may help improve their mood.

Inclusion Criteria

  • Locally advanced, non-metastatic, histologically confirmed malignancy involving the head and neck region * Larynx, pharynx, oral cavity, salivary gland, paranasal sinuses and unknown primary
  • Planned for either definitive or adjuvant radiation therapy with or without chemotherapy * Patients may have received induction chemotherapy or primary surgical resection prior to proceeding to radiation therapy
  • Ability to understand English
  • Daily access to the internet
  • Willing and able to sign informed consent
  • Willing and able to participate in yoga sessions as outlined in the study protocol

Exclusion Criteria

  • Prior head and neck cancer radiation
  • Patients who in the opinion of the treating physician are physically, medically or psychologically impaired to the point that participation is not deemed appropriate or feasible


Vanderbilt University / Ingram Cancer Center
Contact: Barbara A. Murphy
Phone: 615-322-4967


I. To assess the safety and feasibility of hatha yoga in head and neck cancer patients undergoing treatment with primary or adjuvant radiation with or without chemotherapy.

OUTLINE: Patients are randomized to 1 of 2 arms.

ARM I: Patients receive the introduction to yoga and yoga postures handout and watch yoga video over 65-75 minutes. Patients complete daily balanced yoga practice over 5-7 weeks.

ARM II: Patients receive handout, watch video, and complete yoga practice as in Arm I. Patients also receive one-on-one guided yoga instruction over 30 minutes twice per week over 5-7 weeks.

Trial Phase Phase NA

Trial Type Supportive care

Lead Organization
Vanderbilt University / Ingram Cancer Center

Principal Investigator
Barbara A. Murphy

  • Primary ID VICCCSUPP18154
  • Secondary IDs NCI-2019-07297
  • ID NCT04146779