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Rev Soc Bras Med Trop. 2012 Dec;45(6):727-31.

Effects of an exercise program on blood pressure in patients with treated hypertension and chronic Chagas' heart disease.

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  • 1Servi├žo de Fisioterapia, Instituto Nacional de Cardiologia, Rio de Janeiro, RJ. claudiarosaft@bol.com.br



Previous studies describe an imbalance of the autonomic nervous system in Chagas' disease causing increased sympathetic activity, which could influence the genesis of hypertension. However, patients undergoing regular physical exercise could counteract this condition, considering that exercise causes physiological responses through autonomic and hemodynamic changes that positively affect the cardiovascular system. This study aimed to evaluate the effects of an exercise program on blood pressure in hypertensive patients with chronic Chagas' heart disease.


We recruited 17 patients to a 24-week regular exercise program and used ambulatory blood pressure monitoring before and after training. We determined the differences in the systolic blood pressure (SBP), diastolic blood pressure (DBP), and mean blood pressure (MBP) from the beginning to the end of the study.


The blood pressures were evaluated in general and during periods of wakefulness and sleep, respectively: SBP (p = 0.34; 0.23; 0.85), DBP (p = 0.46; 0.44; 0.94) and MBP (p = 0.41; 0.30; 0.97).


There was no statistically significant change in blood pressure after the 24-week exercise program; however, we concluded that physical training is safe for patients with chronic Chagas' disease, with no incidence of increase in blood pressure.

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