Mild cognitive impairment (MCI) is an intermediate stage between the cognitive changes of normal aging and early dementia. Tai Chi may be particularly beneficial to patients with MCI due to its whole-body coordination characteristics. Mayo Clinic is creating a systematic review protocol to outline the methods that will be used to assess the comparative effectiveness and safety of TC for MCI through a systematic review and meta-analysis.
A systematic review will identify and evaluate randomized controlled trials (RCTs) that examined the effects and safety of Tai Chi compared to a placebo, conventional treatment, and no treatment on cognitive function in individuals with MCI. Studies from databases of MEDLINE, PubMed, Embase, Global Health, Cochrane Library, and Scopus from January 1990 to March 2019 reported in English will be searched. Two independent reviewers will screen the studies for inclusion with the eligibility criteria and extract data. Risk of bias of individual studies will be assessed in line with Cochrane risk of bias tool. The overall quality of cumulative evidence will be assessed using selected Grading of Recommendations, Assessment, Development, and Evaluations criteria.
Statistics will be used for heterogeneity assessment, sensitivity analysis, data synthesis, generating funnel plots, and subgroup analysis. Meta-analysis will be performed, if sufficiently homogeneous studies are found. A narrative synthesis will be conducted, grouping studies by exposure and outcome definitions, and describing any differences by subgroups.
This study will provide practical and targeted evidence in investigating the impact of Tai Chi exercise for individuals with MCI. The findings of the study will provide updated evidence to determine whether Tai Chi is an effective intervention to patients with MCI.