Feasibility of a Smartphone-enabled Cardiac Rehabilitation Program in Male Veterans With Previous Clinical Evidence of Coronary Heart Disease

Am J Cardiol. 2018 Nov 1;122(9):1471-1476. doi: 10.1016/j.amjcard.2018.07.028. Epub 2018 Aug 4.


Cardiac rehabilitation (CR) is recommended for patients with coronary heart disease, however, participation among veterans remains poor. Smartphones may facilitate data transfer and communication between patients and providers, among other benefits. We evaluated the feasibility of a smartphone-enabled CR program in a population of veterans. Qualifying veterans were prospectively enrolled in a single-arm, nonrandomized feasibility study of a smartphone-enabled, home-based CR program, featuring an app with daily reminders to exercise, log vitals, and review educational materials. A coach remotely monitored patients through an online dashboard and scheduled telephone visits. Clinical end points were assessed as an exploratory aim. After 21 veterans provided informed consent, 18 were enrolled and successfully completed at least 30days of the program; 13 completed the entire 12-week intervention. Mean (standard deviation) age was 62 (7) years and 96% were male. Program completers logged a mean (standard deviation) of 3.5 (1.4) exercise sessions and 150 (86) exercise minutes per week. The majority (84%) of program completers reported being satisfied overall with the program. Mean functional capacity improved by 1.0 metabolic equivalents (5.3 to 6.3, 95% confidence interval 0.3 to 1.7; p = 0.008) and mean systolic blood pressure at rest improved by 9.6mm Hg (mean difference 9.6, 95% confidence interval -19.0 to -0.7; p = 0.049) among completers. Smartphone-enabled, home-based CR is feasible in veterans with heart disease and is associated with moderate to high levels of engagement and patient satisfaction.

Trial registration: ClinicalTrials.gov NCT02791685.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Blood Pressure
  • Cardiac Rehabilitation / methods*
  • Coronary Disease / rehabilitation*
  • Feasibility Studies
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Mobile Applications*
  • Patient Participation
  • Patient Satisfaction
  • Prospective Studies
  • Sampling Studies
  • Self Care*
  • Smartphone*
  • Systole
  • United States / epidemiology
  • Veterans

Associated data

  • ClinicalTrials.gov/NCT02791685