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Effectiveness of pulmonary rehabilitation performed through exercise training for patients with stable COPD: A meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials

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The application of pulmonary rehabilitation (PR) in chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) improves functional capacity and health-related quality of life (HRQoL) at all stages of disease severity. The aim of this study was to determine the effects of PR, performed through exercise training (PR-ET), on functional capacity and HRQoL in patients with stable COPD.


The meta-analysis was performed by including randomized controlled trials (RCTs) involving patients with stable COPD who participated in different types of PR-ET in which six-minute walk distance (6MWD) and/ or St. George’s Respiratory Questionnaire total scores (SGRQ) were measured. The data search was conducted in December 2020 and January 2021.


The first meta-analysis showed a statistically significant positive effect (MD=31.73m; p<0.00001) of PR-ET on 6MWD. Similarly, the second meta-analysis found a statistically significant favourable effect of pulmonary rehabilitation through exercise training on SGRQ total scores (MD=-8.09; p=0.002).


PR, which includes several different types of exercise training, has a positive effect on the functional capacity and HRQoL of patients with stable COPD. Further studies should be conducted to determine the effects of home-based PR-ET and PR-ET >8 weeks on SGRQ total scores.

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Sujets de la revue:
Medicine, Clinical Medicine, Hygiene and Environmental Medicine