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Lung. 2013 Aug;191(4):337-43. doi: 10.1007/s00408-013-9472-6. Epub 2013 May 17.

Exercise capacity affects quality of life in patients with pulmonary hypertension.

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Department of Internal Medicine I, Carl Gustav Carus University Hospital, Technical University of Dresden, Fetscherstrasse 74, 01309, Dresden, Germany.



The objective of this prospective study was to evaluate the impact of exercise capacity, mental disorders, and hemodynamics on quality-of-life (QoL) parameters in patients with pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH) and chronic thromboembolic pulmonary hypertension (CTEPH).


Sixty-three patients with invasively diagnosed PAH (n = 48) or CTEPH (n = 15) underwent a broad panel of assessments, including cardiopulmonary exercise testing (CPET), 6-minute walking distance (6-MWD), World Health Organization functional class (WHO-FC), and assessment of hemodynamics. QoL was evaluated by the 36-item Medical Outcome Study Short Form Health Survey Questionnaire (SF-36). Exercise capacity, hemodynamics, age, gender, and mental disorders (anxiety and depression) were assessed for association with QoL subscores by uni- and multivariate regression analyses.


Exercise capacity, WHO-FC, oxygen therapy, symptoms of right heart failure, right atrial pressure, and mental disorders were significantly associated with QoL (p < 0.05). In the stepwise backward selection multivariate analysis, depression remained an independent parameter in seven of eight subscales of the SF-36. Furthermore, peak oxygen uptake (peakVO2) during CPET, 6-MWD, anxiety, long-term oxygen therapy, right heart failure, and age remained independent factors for QoL. Hemodynamic parameters at rest did not independently correlate with any domain of the SF-36 QoL subscores.


Mental disorders, exercise capacity, long-term oxygen therapy, right heart failure, and age play important role in the quality of life in patients with PAH and CTEPH.

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