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Prog Cardiovasc Dis. 2014 Mar-Apr;56(5):557-62. doi: 10.1016/j.pcad.2013.12.001. Epub 2013 Dec 7.

Current state of cardiac rehabilitation in Japan.

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Department of Cardiovascular Rehabilitation, Department of Cardiovascular Medicine, National Cerebral and Cardiovascular Center, Suita, Japan. Electronic address:


In Japan, metabolic risk factors have been increasing due to the westernization and urbanization of lifestyle. This justifiably raises a concern that the incidence of coronary heart disease (CHD) in Japan will increase over time, and indeed, recent epidemiological studies in Japan suggest the incidence of acute myocardial infarction (AMI) is increasing. Cardiac rehabilitation (CR) in Japan has been traditionally performed in the inpatient setting. To obtain reimbursement, a CR facility must fulfill certain criteria including being a medical institution with a cardiology/cardiac surgery section which has at least a cardiologist/cardiac surgeon and an experienced CR physician as full-time employees. These criteria create challenges to the availability of outpatient CR after hospital discharge. A recent analysis found outpatient CR participation rate was estimated to be between 3.8 and 7.6% in Japan. This review describes recent trends in the incidence of AMI and the current status of the use of CR in Japan.


Exercise; Heart disease; Lifestyle; Risk reduction

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