Serial changes in exercise capacity, quality of life and cardiopulmonary responses after pulmonary rehabilitation in patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease

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Background and Objectives:Patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) often have poor health-related quality of life (HRQL), exercise capacity and cardiopulmonary function. Pulmonary rehabilitation (PR) is beneficial to improve exercise capacity and HRQL. However, series changes of these parameters remain unclear.Methods:Forty-three subjects participated in a 3-months PR program. Subjects were evaluated at baseline and at 8, 16, and 24 sessions after PR.Results:After 8 sessions, there were significant improvements in the SGRQ-symptom domain, exertional dyspnea, and oxygen pulse (all p < 0.05). Maximal VO2, SGRQ-activity and SGRQ-impact domains, and respiratory muscle strength were significantly improved after 16 and 24 sessions (all p < 0.05).Conclusions:Eight sessions of exercise training lead to improvement of symptoms and exertional dyspnea. 16 to 24 sessions result in further improvement. We suggest patients receive 16 to 24 sessions of PR.

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