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J Cardiopulm Rehabil Prev. 2012 Mar-Apr;32(2):92-100. doi: 10.1097/HCR.0b013e31823be107.

Impact of exercise capacity on dyspnea and health-related quality of life in patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.

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Department of Public Health, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Copenhagen, Copenhagen, Denmark.



To assess the impact of the amount of exercise training during pulmonary rehabilitation (PR) program for improvements in dyspnea and health-related quality of life (HRQOL) in patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).


Data on COPD patient health, exercise capacity, dyspnea, and HRQOL were collected at the start and at the end of PR, which was provided in the ambulatory section of the hospital and lasted for 7 weeks. Pulmonary rehabilitation program included exercise training, education, smoking cessation, and diet consultation sessions. Data were analyzed using multivariable linear regression.


Baseline data were obtained from a total of 143 patients with followup data in 108 patients available at the end of PR. The majority of the patient population had severe disease progression of COPD as exhibited by spirometry test results. Results of multivariable analyses showed that after adjustment for sociodemographic characteristics and baseline patient characteristics, changes in dyspnea and exercise capacity were directly and linearly predicted by the number of exercise training sessions attended. Changes in disease-specific and general HRQOL outcomes were not predicted by the amount of exercise training received during PR.


Quality of life in patients with COPD is predicted by dyspnea. Thus, to further investigate the influence of exercise training on quality of life in patients with CODP, simultaneous assessment of dyspnea should be considered.

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