Effects of Exercise Rehabilitation on Blood Pressure of Patients after Myocardial Infarction

Mehdi Kargarfard, Reza Rouzbehani, Fatema Basati


Objectives: Supervised exercise cardiac rehabilitation programs
have been suggested to all patients specially patients with postmyocardial
infarction (MI) for many years. However, limited information
is available on the usefulness of exercise rehabilitation
programs in chronic MI. The aim of this study was to evaluate the
outcome of supervised exercise training on MI patients by measuring
both physical and physiological factors.
Methods: This was a semi-experimental randomized study. Itincluded
seventy two (35 cases, 37 controls) post-MI patients aged 40
to 67 years. They were randomly selected from those with MI
based on WHO criteria who were referred to cardiac rehabilitation
unit of Isfahan Shahid Chamran cardiovascular research center.
After initial measurements including weight, height, functional
capacity, diastolic blood pressure (DBP) and systolic blood
pressure (SBP) in both resting and exercise states, patients were
randomized into either the training group (n=35) or the control
group (n =37). The training group had supervised aerobic training
program, three times a week, with 60-70% of the maximal heart
rate (HR) reserve for two months. After the training program was
completed, all measurements were repeated in both groups. Data
were analyzed using one-way analysis of variance (ANOVA) with
repeated measures.
Results: Patients in exercise group showed statistically significant
improvement in resting HR (81.27±7.75 bpm vs.
74.17±10.11bpm, p≤0.001), resting SBP (125.92±9.30 mmHg vs.
123.54±6.82 mmHg, p≤0.01), SBP peak (150.22±7.12 mmHg vs.
133.54±6.82 mmHg, p≤0.001), HR peak (132.51±3.06 bpm vs.
142.00±3.14bpm, p≤0.001), and exercise capacity (8.49±1.18
METs vs. 9.42±1.19 METs, p≤0.01).
Conclusions: The results from the study showed that a 2-month
exercise rehabilitation program in post-MI patients is useful for
improving both blood pressure and exercise capacity and should
be encouraged more commonly.
Keywords: Myocardial infarction; Exercise cardiac rehabilitation;
Blood pressure; Functional capacity.

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