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Cycle ergometer and inspiratory muscle training offer modest benefit compared with cycle ergometer alone: a comprehensive assessment in stable COPD patients

Authors Wang K, Zeng G, Li R, Luo Y, Wang M, Hu Y, Xu W, Zhou L, Chen R, Chen X

Received 20 April 2017

Accepted for publication 1 August 2017

Published 6 September 2017 Volume 2017:12 Pages 2655—2668


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Dr Richard Russell

Video abstract presented by Xin Chen, Kai Wang, and Rui Li.

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Kai Wang,1,* Guang-qiao Zeng,2,* Rui Li,1,* Yu-wen Luo,1 Mei Wang,1 Yu-he Hu,1 Wen-hui Xu,1 Lu-qian Zhou,2 Rong-chang Chen,2 Xin Chen1

1Department of Respiratory Medicine, Zhujiang Hospital, Southern Medical University, Guangzhou, China; 2Department of Respiratory Medicine, The State Key Laboratory of Respiratory Disease, National Clinical Research Center for Respiratory Disease, Guangzhou Institute of Respiratory Disease, First Affiliated Hospital of Guangzhou Medical University, Guangzhou, China

*These authors contributed equally to this work

Background: Cycle ergometer training (CET) has been shown to improve exercise performance of the quadriceps muscles in patients with COPD, and inspiratory muscle training (IMT) may improve the pressure-generating capacity of the inspiratory muscles. However, the effects of combined CET and IMT remain unclear and there is a lack of comprehensive assessment.
Materials and methods: Eighty-one patients with COPD were randomly allocated to three groups: 28 received 8 weeks of CET + IMT (combined training group), 27 received 8 weeks of CET alone (CET group), and 26 only received 8 weeks of free walking (control group). Comprehensive assessment including respiratory muscle strength, exercise capacity, pulmonary function, dyspnea, quality of life, emotional status, nutritional status, and body mass index, airflow obstruction, and exercise capacity index were measured before and after the pulmonary rehabilitation program.
Results: Respiratory muscle strength, exercise capacity, inspiratory capacity, dyspnea, quality of life, depression and anxiety, and nutritional status were all improved in the combined training and CET groups when compared with that in the control group (P<0.05) after pulmonary rehabilitation program. Inspiratory muscle strength increased significantly in the combined training group when compared with that in the CET group (ΔPImax [maximal inspiratory pressure] 5.20±0.89 cmH2O vs 1.32±0.91 cmH2O; P<0.05). However, there were no significant differences in the other indices between the two groups (P>0.05). Patients with weakened respiratory muscles in the combined training group derived no greater benefit than those without respiratory muscle weakness (P>0.05). There were no significant differences in these indices between the patients with malnutrition and normal nutrition after pulmonary rehabilitation program (P>0.05).
Conclusion: Combined training is more effective than CET alone for increasing inspiratory muscle strength. IMT may not be useful when combined with CET in patients with weakened inspiratory muscles. Nutritional status had slight impact on the effects of pulmonary rehabilitation. A comprehensive assessment approach can be more objective to evaluate the effects of combined CET and IMT.

Keywords: chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, pulmonary rehabilitation, cycle ergometer, inspiratory muscle training, comprehensive assessment, exercise performance

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