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The Effects of Body Composition Changes to Observed Improvements in Cardiopulmonary Parameters After Exercise Training With Cardiac Rehabilitation FREE TO VIEW

Richard V. Milani; Carl J. Lavie
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From the Cardiovascular Health Center, Section on Cardiology, Department of Internal Medicine, Ochsner Medical Institutions, New Orleans

1998 by the American College of Chest Physicians

Chest. 1998;113(3):599-601. doi:10.1378/chest.113.3.599
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Published online


Study objective: To discriminate the effects of body fat reduction on improvements in peak aerobic capacity made following exercise training during cardiac rehabilitation.

Design: Observational, prospective study.

Setting: Outpatient cardiovascular health center at regional academic center.

Patient interventions: Peak oxygen uptake (pkVo2), percent body fat, lean body mass (LBM), and other anthropometric measures were assessed before and after a 3-month program of cardiac rehabilitation and exercise training in 500 consecutive cardiac patients following a major coronary event. Baseline pkl=V:o2 was corrected for LBM (pklV:o2 lean) and compared with posttraining values.

Results: Following exercise training, percent body fat decreased 5% from 26.2±8.0 to 24.8±7.5 (p<0.0001), and LBM increased 1% from 61.3±12.5 to 61.7±11.8 kg (p=0.02). pkVo2 increased 16% from 16.0 ±4.1 to 18.5±4.8 mL/kg/min (p<0.0001), and pkVo2 lean increased 13% from 21.7±5.3 to 24.6±6.0 mL/kg/min (p<0.0001). Isolating the effects of reduction in body fat, we discern that these changes contributed to 0.3 of the 2.5 mL/kg/min increase in pkVo2 or 12% of the increase in pkVo2 observed.

Conclusions: Changes in body composition, as a consequence of dietary and exercise modification, contribute to 12% of the "observed" improvement noted in weight-adjusted peak aerobic capacity following cardiac rehabilitation and exercise training. Changes in pkVo2 lean should be used by investigators to assess the singular effects of exercise conditioning alone.




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