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J Clin Med. 2019 Mar 14;8(3). pii: E361. doi: 10.3390/jcm8030361.

Effects of a Combined Community Exercise Program in Obstructive Sleep Apnea Syndrome: A Randomized Clinical Trial.

Author information

1
Servicio de Neumología, Unidad del Sueño, Hospital Clínic de Barcelona, 08036 Barcelona, Spain. klgorodrigotorres@gmail.com.
2
Departamento de Kinesiología, Facultad de Medicina, Universidad de Chile, 8380453 Santiago, Chile. klgorodrigotorres@gmail.com.
3
Facultad de Ciencias de la Salud Blanquerna. Global Research on Wellbeing (GRoW)), Universitat Ramon Llull, 08025 Barcelona, Spain. jordivc@blanquerna.url.edu.
4
Unidad de Cuidados Intensivos en Cirugía Cardiovascular, Instituto Clínico Cardiovascular, Hospital Clínic de Barcelona, 08036 Barcelona, Spain. jdmartibcn@gmail.com.
5
Servicio de Neumología, Unidad del Sueño, Hospital Clínic de Barcelona, 08036 Barcelona, Spain. onintzag@gmail.com.
6
Respiratory Institute, Hospital Clínic de Barcelona, 08036 Barcelona, Spain. elenagimeno@gmail.com.
7
Institut d'Investigacions Biomèdiques August Pi i Sunyer (IDIBAPS), 08036 Barcelona, Spain. elenagimeno@gmail.com.
8
Servicio de Endocrinología y Nutrición, Hospital Clínic de Barcelona, 08036 Barcelona, Spain. bromano@clinic.cat.
9
Servicio de Neumología, Unidad del Sueño, Hospital Clínic de Barcelona, 08036 Barcelona, Spain. cembid@clinic.cat.
10
Servicio de Neumología, Unidad del Sueño, Hospital Clínic de Barcelona, 08036 Barcelona, Spain. jmmontserrat2@gmail.com.

Abstract

Physical activity is associated with a decreased prevalence of obstructive sleep apnea and improved sleep efficiency. Studies on the effects of a comprehensive exercise program in a community setting remain limited. Our objective was to investigate the effects of a combined physical and oropharyngeal exercise program on the apnea-hypopnea index in patients with moderate to severe obstructive sleep apnea. This was a randomized clinical trial where the intervention group followed an eight-week urban-walking program, oropharyngeal exercises, and diet and sleep recommendations. The control group followed diet and sleep recommendations. A total of 33 patients were enrolled and randomized and, finally, 27 patients were included in the study (IG, 14; CG, 13) Obstructive sleep apnea patients were analyzed with a median age of 67 (52⁻74) and median apnea-hypopnea index of 32 events/h (25⁻41). The apnea-hypopnea index did not differ between groups pre- and post-intervention. However, in intervention patients younger than 60 (n = 6) a reduction of the apnea-hypopnea index from 29.5 (21.8⁻48.3) to 15.5 (11⁻34) events/h (p = 0.028) was observed. While a comprehensive multimodal program does not modify the apnea-hypopnea index, it could reduce body weight and increase the walking distance of patients with moderate to severe obstructive sleep apnea. Patients younger than 60 may also present a decreased apnea-hypopnea index after intervention.

KEYWORDS:

apnea-hypopnea syndrome; oropharyngeal exercises; physical training; urban-walking program

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