Turkish Journal of Medical Sciences




Background/aim: Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) is one of the most common causes of death worldwide. Therefore, optimizing medical therapy in the comprehensive management of the disease, as well as including pulmonary rehabilitation (PR) in the treatment, is essential. The goal of our study was to determine the impact of PR on the survival of COPD patients. Materials and methods: Between 2007-2015, 509 COPD patients who completed the PR constituted the PR group, while 167 patients who applied but could not complete it after the initial evaluations formed the control group. In the PR group, dyspnea perception, exercise capacity, muscle strength, body composition, quality of life, psychosocial status, and i-BODE scores were assessed at the beginning and end of the program, whereas in the control group, these assessments could only be conducted at the beginning. Also, after PR, our PR participants have prescribed a home exercise program, and they were recalled to the hospital at the 3rd, 6th, 12th, 18th, and 24th months for follow-up visits. Results: A statistically significant improvement was found in almost all the data (except FEV1/FVC, BORG after exercise, and FFMI) after PR. There was a statistically significant difference in 5-year survival in favor of the PR group (p = 0.006), and in PR patients who accompanied the home exercise program vs. those who did not (p = 0.000). Also the gains in MRC (p = 0.003; OR: 2.20; CI: 1.319- 3.682), MEP (p = 0.041; OR: 1.02; CI: 1.001-1.035), and i-BODE (p = 0.006; OR: 0.914; CI: 0.857-0.974) increased the survival. Conclusion: Apart from incorporating PR into treatment in the comprehensive management of COPD, we demonstrated that maintaining a home exercise program for at least two years following PR increased 5-year survival significantly.


Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, pulmonary rehabilitation, home exercise program, maintenance, 5-year survival

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