Study Finds Consistent Exercise Can Have Positive Physical and Mental Health Benefits for Pulmonary Hypertension Patients

A recent study has found that aerobic and strength training exercise programs can have a long term effect on physical functioning for patients with pulmonary hypertension (PH).

PH is a chronic condition where patients face fatigue, exertional dyspnea, and other symptoms. Inactivity has been found to exacerbate symptoms. This in turn can have psychological effects such as increased anxiety.

The Study

The primary aim of this study was examine the effects of exercise in the long term for PH patients. The study evaluated exercise for 6 months in a total of 22 patients.

Participants were divided into two groups randomly. The first group underwent a 6 month exercise regimen that included both aerobic exercises as well as strength training. The second group did not receive any exercise training.

Prior to the treatment, all participants had a physical evaluation as well as a psychological evaluation. These same evaluations were done after the 6 months had passed. All participants were then evaluated again 3 months after the exercise period had ended (the 9 month mark from the start of the study).

The researchers evaluated both physical/functional outcomes as well as psychological/quality of life outcomes of participants. They found that after 6 months, those who had gone through the exercise regimen had significant improvements physically. These included improved cardiopulmonary exercise time and lower limb strength. Psychological improvements were also noted.

All of these results were maintained when patients were evaluated again at the 9 month mark.

Also notable is that there were no complications documented from those in the exercise group throughout the duration of the study.

In conclusion, the researchers have concluded that a long-term exercise regimen is both safe and effective for PH patients. It has benefits that span both the physical and psychological realm. Therefore, exercise can improve both the quality of life for patients and their physical well being.

You can read more about this study here.

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