JOURNAL ARTICLE

[Effects of a short-term pulmonary rehabilitation program on patients with chronic respiratory failure due to pulmonary emphysema]

A Onodera, K Yazaki
Nihon Kokyūki Gakkai Zasshi, the Journal of the Japanese Respiratory Society 1998, 36 (8): 679-83
9844386
To evaluate the effects of a short-term pulmonary rehabilitation program on dyspnea, exercise capacity, and lung function, 15 patients with chronic respiratory failure due to pulmonary emphysema were enrolled in such a program for 3 weeks as inpatients. The program consisted of pursed lip breathing, diaphragmatic breathing, respiratory muscle stretch gymnastics, and walking with synchronized breathing. Dyspnea as measured with a visual analogue scale at the end of a 6-minute walk before and after the program (49.7 +/- 4.0% to 24.2 +/- 3.8%) decreased significantly (p < 0.01). As a measure of functional exercise capacity, the 6-minute walking distance (226.9 +/- 32.4 m to 292.1 +/- 35.8 m) increased significantly (p < 0.01). As an indicator of maximal exercise capacity, endurance time on an incremental treadmill test did not improve. Spirometric data did not change during the study. Total lung capacity (TLC) (8.44 +/- 0.70 L to 7.58 +/- 0.74 L) and residual volume (RV) (5.13 +/- 0.53 L to 4.28 +/- 0.59 L) decreased significantly (p < 0.01). The findings suggest that this program relieves dyspnea, increases functional exercise capacity, and decreases TLC and RV on patients with chronic respiratory failure due to pulmonary emphysema.

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