The benefits of pulmonary rehabilitation can be maintained through supervised and unsupervised regimes, according to a study
The study aimed to determine if weekly, supervised, outpatient-based exercise, plus unsupervised home exercise following an eight-week pulmonary rehabilitation programme, would maintain exercise capacity and quality of life better than standard care of unsupervised home exercise training.
The researchers recruited 59 people with moderate chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) who completed an eight-week pulmonary rehabilitation programme. They were then randomised to an intervention group of weekly, supervised, exercise plus home exercise, or to a control group of unsupervised home exercise. They were followed up for 12 months and researchers recorded 6-min walking tests and completed quality of life questionnaires.
The authors found that 12 months following pulmonary rehabilitation both groups had maintained a 6-min walk distance and there was no significant change in their quality of life scores.