Objective: This study was planned to compare the outcomes between supervised and home-based exercise training in patients with chronic heart failure.
Methods: The study was conducted at the Department of Physical Therapy in Ankara University, Faculty of Medicine, Turkey between 2000 and 2001. Twenty-two patients with stable chronic heart failure were randomly assigned to the supervised exercise training group (n=11) or the home-based exercise training group (n=11). Symptom-limited maximal exercise tests with gas exchange analysis were carried out before randomization. Work load equivalent to 60% of achieved peak heart rate at the tests was determined as exercise training work load for each subject. Both groups participated in a program of 3 exercise training sessions per week for 3 months. The exercise tests were repeated after 3 months.
Results: After training, peak exercise duration increased significantly in the supervised exercise training group and the home-based exercise training group (p<0.05). There was substantial improvement in peak VO2 with exercise training in the supervised exercise training group (p<0.05) but, peak VO2 did not change significantly in the home-based exercise training group (p>0.05).
Conclusion: Supervised and home-based exercise training enhanced exercise capacity in patients with chronic heart failure. The training program must be tailored to each patient's specific limitations, individual needs and possibilities. Home-based exercise training may be a training alternative to stable chronic heart failure patients who prefer not to participate in an outpatient supervised training program.