Objective: To investigate the effect of early aerobic training on the aerobic and functional abilities of patients in the subacute stage of cerebrovascular accident (CVA). Design: Randomized controlled trial. Setting: Rehabilitation unit in Israel. Participants: Ninety-two patients who had a first CVA were randomly assigned to an exercise-training group or to a control group. Intervention: Aerobic training with a leg cycle ergometer for 8 weeks. Main Outcome Measures: Workload, exercise time, resting and submaximal blood pressure and heart rate, and functional abilities. Results: A trend toward improvement was found in all aerobic parameters for the experimental group, but only heart rate at rest (P=.02), workload, and work time (P<.01) improved significantly. A trend for improvement was also found in all parameters of function for the experimental group, but only stair climbing was significantly better (P<.01). An interaction (95% confidence interval, 1.7-17.21) was found between age and aerobic training on walking distance. Although no significant effect was found in the group of younger patients (aged <65y), a significant difference in favor of training was noted in the group of older patients. Conclusions: Patients with CVA in the subacute stage improved some of their aerobic and functional abilities after submaximal aerobic training.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
Supported in part by the Chief Scientific Ministry of Health, Jerusalem, Israel.
- Cerebrovascular accident
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Physical Therapy, Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation