Resistance training for chronic heart failure patients on beta blocker medications.Int J Cardiol. 2005 Jul 20; 102(3):493-9.IJ
Resistance training increases the skeletal muscle strength and functional ability of chronic heart failure patients. However, there is limited data regarding the effect of resistance training on the hemodynamic responses and peak oxygen consumption (peak VO(2)) of chronic heart failure patients treated with beta-blocker. This study examined the effect of resistance training on hemodynamics, peak aerobic capacity, muscle strength and quality of life of chronic heart failure patients on beta-blockers medication.
Fifteen men diagnosed with chronic heart failure were matched to either a resistance training program or non-training control group. At baseline and after 8 weeks of resistance training patients performed both Balke incremental and maximal strength tests and completed quality of life questionnaires.
The resistance training group demonstrated a significant increase of walking time and peak VO(2) by 11.7% (p=0.002) and approximately 19% (p<0.05), respectively. Peak VO(2) was significantly correlated with both walking time (r=0.54, p=0.038) and change in total weight lifted (r=0.55, p=0.034). Quality of life significantly increased by 87% (p=0.030). The improvement in quality of life was correlated with post training peak VO(2) (r=0.58, p=0.025) and total weight lifted during the post maximal strength test (r=-0.52, p=0.047).
The benefits from resistance training for chronic heart failure patients on beta-blocker medication included an increased aerobic and exercise capacity, skeletal muscle strength and most importantly, an improvement in the quality of life, which is the main goal of cardiac rehabilitation programs. Furthermore, with appropriate supervision, it is recommended that resistance exercise be added to the exercise rehabilitation program of these patients when possible.