Clinical Relevance of a Balance Training Program on Liver Transplant Patients. A Randomized Controlled Trial

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Abstract

Background

Although some studies have reported significant improvements in physical function and strength after training programs on Liver Transplant (LT) recipients, there is a lack of knowledge on how it affects in static and dynamic balance, being an important part of these participants’ tasks development. The aim of the study was to determine the effects of a 6-month multicomponent circuit training program on static and dynamic balance in LT participants.

Methods

54 participants were randomized at 6 months after LT into 2 groups: exercise group (EXER) and control group (CONTROL), with repeat testing at 6 (baseline) and 12 months after LT. The intervention consisted in a multicomponent training, including balance, strength, endurance and flexibility training, with exercises arranged in a circuit setup and a moderate intensity with high perceived exertion. Training sessions were performed in the hospital facilities with qualified trainers. To determine differences overtime between EXER and CONTROL, mixed regression linear models with subject variable as random factor and variables of treatment duration, type and interaction as predictors were used.

Results

EXER showed significant differences (p<.05) compared to CONTROL in all variables of static and dynamic balance, hip strength (+49% vs +13%), agility (-16% vs -1%) and flexibility (+78% vs -26%). Adherence to the intervention was 94%, and 80% of the participants continued voluntarily training after the 6 months.

Conclusions

This study demonstrated that a multicomponent circuit training program at a moderate intensity with high perceived exertion could reduce the probability of injuries because improves balance on LT recipients.

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