An integrative review of physical activity/exercise intervention effects on function and health-related quality of life in older adults with heart failure

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This paper reviews randomized, controlled trials (RCTs) that have used a physical activity/exercise intervention in older adults with heart failure and reported outcomes of physical function and/or health-related quality of life. An integrative review was necessary because a literature search indicated no reviews have been done regarding these outcomes which are deemed very important by the older adult population. Computerized database search strategies by authors between 2002 and 2015 resulted in 163 studies, with 12 meeting inclusion criteria. Interventions were performed in clinic and home-based, group and/or individual settings with durations from three to 12 months. Interventions were varied. Common methodological weaknesses of the studies include lack of theory guiding the intervention, small sample and low minority representation. Strengths included detailed intervention methods. There was a moderate effect of interventions with no reported adverse effects. Further work is essential to identify successful strategies to support older adults with heart failure to increase their physical activity levels.

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