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Rev Esp Cardiol. 2005 Oct;58(10):1181-7.

[Cardiac rehabilitation in patients with myocardial infarction: a 10-year follow-up study].

[Article in Spanish]

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Unidad de Rehabilitación Cardíaca, Instituto de Cardiología, Hospital Ramón y Cajal, Madrid, Spain.



Very little information is available on the effect of cardiac rehabilitation programs on long-term survival. The primary aim of this study was to assess the effect of a structured cardiac rehabilitation program on mortality in patients who had suffered acute myocardial infarction. The secondary endpoint was the effect on morbidity.


The study included 180 low-risk male patients aged under 65 years. Patients were randomly assigned to one of 2 groups: 90 entered into a comprehensive cardiac rehabilitation program, and 90 served as a control group. The mean follow-up period was 10 years.


All-cause mortality was significantly lower in the intervention group: the 10-year survival rate was 91.8% in the intervention group compared with 81.7% in the control group (P=.04). There was also a decrease in cardiovascular mortality, though it was not statistically significant: the 10-year survival rate was 91.8% in the intervention group compared with 83.8% in the control group (P=.10). The incidence of non-fatal complications was lower in the intervention group (35.2% vs 63.2%, P=.03), as was the incidence of unstable angina (15.7% vs 33.9%, P =.02) and cardiac heart failure (3.0% vs 14.4%, P=.02), and the need for coronary intervention (8.4% vs 22.9%, P=.02).


The application of a comprehensive cardiac rehabilitation program significantly decreased long-term mortality and morbidity in low-risk patients after acute myocardial infarction.

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