Physical training and relaxation therapy in cardiac rehabilitation assessed through a composite criterion for training outcome

Author: van Dixhoorn J//Duivenvoorden HJ//Staal HA//Pool J
St. Joannes de Deo Hospital, Haarlem, The Netherlands
Conference/Journal: Am Heart J
Date published: 1989
Other: Volume ID: 118 , Issue ID: 3 , Pages: 545-52 , Word Count: 141

One hundred fifty-six myocardial infarction patients were randomly assigned to either exercise plus relaxation and breathing therapy (treatment A, n = 76) or to exercise training only (treatment B, n = 80). Effects on exercise testing showed a more pronounced training bradycardia and a remarkable improvement in ST abnormalities in treatment A (p less than 0.005). A model was developed to integrate the various exercise parameters into a single measure for training benefit. Approximately half the patients showed a training success, with a more positive and less negative outcome in treatment A (p = 0.09). The odds for failure were 0.25 for treatment A and 0.51 for treatment B (odds ratio: 2.04; 95% confidence interval, 0.94 to 4.6). Thus the risk of failure was reduced by half when relaxation was added to exercise training. These results indicate that exercise training is not successful in all MI patients and that relaxation therapy enhances training benefits.