Effect of home-based pulmonary rehabilitation in patients with idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis

Multidiscip Respir Med. 2010 Feb 28;5(1):31-7. doi: 10.1186/2049-6958-5-1-31.


Objective: The aim of this study was to investigate the effects of a home-based pulmonary rehabilitation program on the functional outcome parameters in patients with idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF).

Design: A prospective study.

Patients: Seventeen patients diagnosed with IPF.

Methods: A home-based pulmonary rehabilitation program was carried out in 17 IPF patients for 12 weeks. Dyspnea severity during daily life activities (Medical Research Council Scale), pulmonary function (pulmonary function test), exercise capacity (6-minute walking test, 6MWD), and general health related quality of life (Medical Outcomes Short Form-36) were evaluated.

Results: A significant decrease in perceived dyspnea (p = 0.003) and leg fatigue (p < 0.05) severities, and an increase in the 6MWD (p = 0.04) and general health related quality of life scores (health perception, physical role, and emotional status subscores) were found after the program (p < 0.05).

Conclusion: Home-based pulmonary rehabilitation may reduce dyspnea and fatigue severities, and improve exercise capacity and health-related quality of life in patients with IPF. In the treatment of IPF patients, home-based pulmonary rehabilitation programs should be placed alongside the routine treatment options.