Supervised and home-based exercise training for patients with intermittent claudication

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Wang, JX, Zhou, S, Bronks, R, Graham, J & Myers, SP 2008, 'Supervised and home-based exercise training for patients with intermittent claudication', International Journal of Angiology, vol. 17, no. 3, pp. 137-140.


Home-based exercise training, applied as the primary treatment in patients with intermittent claudication, has produced inconsistent effects on walking capacity in previous published studies. The aim of the present study was to evaluate whether a home-based exercise training program could maintain improved walking capacity and other functional variables achieved through a supervised exercise training program. The present design was a 48-week self-controlled study. The first 12-week period was a control stage in which no prescribed exercise program was provided, the second 12-week period was a supervised treadmill-walking training program and the following 24-week period was a home-based exercise program. Twenty-two subjects with intermittent claudication were recruited initially; 15 of them (14 men and one woman) completed the whole program. Walking capacity, peak oxygen uptake, walking economy and ankle-brachial index were measured at baseline and at 12, 24 and 48 weeks. There was no significant change in the measured variables after the control stage. The 12-week supervised treadmill-walking training program significantly increased pain-free walking time, maximal walking time and peak oxygen uptake. Walking economy was also significantly improved. These improvements were successfully maintained after 24 weeks of home-based training. The results indicated that 12 weeks of supervised treadmill-walking training followed by a home-based training program is an effective model of exercise rehabilitation for patients with intermittent claudication.

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