Exercise Training After Pulmonary Endarterectomy for Patients with Chronic Thromboembolic Pulmonary Hypertension

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BACKGROUND: After undergoing a procedure of pulmonary endarterectomy (PEA), patients with chronic thromboembolic pulmonary hypertension (CTEPH) may still experience reduced exercise capacity. Data on effects of exercise training in these patients are scant.

OBJECTIVES: To evaluate the effectiveness of exercise training after PEA for CTEPH and if the presence of "residual pulmonary hypertension" may affect the outcome.

METHODS: Retrospective data analysis of CTEPH patients undergoing inpatient exercise training after PEA. According to predefined criteria, patients were divided into those with (group 1) and without (group 2) a "good" post-surgery hemodynamic response. Assessments of the 6-min walking distance test (6-min walking distance test [6 MWT]: primary outcome) were performed before and after surgery (before training), after training and at 3-month follow-up. Hemodynamic and lung function data were also analyzed.

RESULTS: Data of 84 and 26 patients of groups 1 and 2, respectively, were analyzed. After surgery patients showed a reduction in 6 MWT, which significantly reversed after training and further improved at 3 months (p = 0.0001), without any significant difference between groups. The percentage of patients reaching the minimal clinically important difference in 6 MWT was similar between groups. The sig<X00_Del_TrennDivis>-</X00_Del_TrennDivis>nificant (p = 0.0001) post-surgery improvement in hemodynamics was maintained at 3 months without any significant difference between groups. New York Heart Association functional class improved in parallel to the hemodynamic improvement.

CONCLUSIONS: Exercise training in patients with CTEPH after PEA, an inpatient exercise training program, improves exercise capacity for up to 3 months, independently of the post-surgery hemodynamic response.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)234-241
Number of pages8
JournalRespiration; international review of thoracic diseases
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Oct 8 2019


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