A review of guidelines for cardiac rehabilitation exercise programmes: Is there an international consensus?

Price, K, Gordon, B, Bird, S and Benson, A 2016, 'A review of guidelines for cardiac rehabilitation exercise programmes: Is there an international consensus?', European Journal of Preventive Cardiology, vol. 23, no. 16, pp. 1715-1733.


Document type: Journal Article
Collection: Journal Articles

Title A review of guidelines for cardiac rehabilitation exercise programmes: Is there an international consensus?
Author(s) Price, K
Gordon, B
Bird, S
Benson, A
Year 2016
Journal name European Journal of Preventive Cardiology
Volume number 23
Issue number 16
Start page 1715
End page 1733
Total pages 19
Publisher Sage Publications
Abstract Background Cardiac rehabilitation is an important component in the continuum of care for individuals with cardiovascular disease, providing a multidisciplinary education and exercise programme to improve morbidity and mortality risk. Internationally, cardiac rehabilitation programmes are implemented through various models. This review compared cardiac rehabilitation guidelines in order to identify any differences and/or consensus in exercise testing, prescription and monitoring. Methods Guidelines, position statements and policy documents for cardiac rehabilitation, available internationally in the English language, were identified through a search of electronic databases and government and cardiology society websites. Information about programme delivery, exercise testing, prescription and monitoring were extracted and compared. Results Leading cardiac rehabilitation societies in North America and Europe recommend that patients progress from moderate- to vigorous-intensity aerobic endurance exercise over the course of the programme, with resistance training included as an important adjunct, for maintaining independence and quality of life. North American and European guidelines also recommend electrocardiograph-monitored exercise stress tests. Guidelines for South America and individual European nations typically include similar recommendations; however, those in the United Kingdom, Australia and New Zealand specify lower-intensity exercise and less technical assessment of functional capacity. Conclusion Higher-intensity aerobic training programmes, supplemented by resistance training, have been recommended and deemed safe for cardiac rehabilitation patients by many authorities. Based on research evidence, this may also provide superior outcomes for patients and should therefore be considered when developing an international consensus for exercise prescription in cardiac rehabilitation.
Subject Exercise Physiology
Cardiology (incl. Cardiovascular Diseases)
DOI - identifier 10.1177/2047487316657669
Copyright notice © The European Society of Cardiology 2016
ISSN 2047-4881
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