Background: The present systematic review and meta-analysis examines studies published in the past 10 years that described cardiac rehabilitation (CR) enrollment among women and men, to determine whether a significant sex difference persists despite the evidence supporting the benefits of CR to women as well as men.
Methods: Scopus, MEDLINE, CINAHL, PsycINFO, PubMed, and The Cochrane Library databases were systematically searched for peer-reviewed articles published from July 2000 to July 2011. Titles and abstracts were screened, and the 623 selected full-text articles were independently screened based on predefined inclusion/exclusion criteria (guided by the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses; PRISMA) and assessed for quality using the Strengthening the Reporting of Observational studies in Epidemiology (STROBE) statement form. The meta-analysis was undertaken using Review Manager software.
Results: Twenty-six eligible observational studies reporting data for 297,719 participants (128,499 [43.2%] women) were included. On average, 45.0% of men and 38.5% of women enrolled in CR. In the pooled analysis, men were more likely to be enrolled in CR compared with women (female enrollment vs male enrollment odds ratio, 0.64; 95% confidence interval, 0.57-0.72; P < 0.00001). Heterogeneity was considered high (I(2) = 78%). In the subgroup analyses, systematic CR referral during inpatient tertiary care resulted in significantly greater enrollment among women than nonsystematic referral.
Conclusions: Overall, rates of CR enrollment among women are significantly lower compared with men, with women being 36% less likely to enroll in a rehabilitation program.
Copyright © 2014 Canadian Cardiovascular Society. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.