Impact of Sophrology on cardiopulmonary fitness in teenagers and young adults with a congenital heart disease: The SOPHROCARE study rationale, design and methods

Int J Cardiol Heart Vasc. 2020 Mar 3:27:100489. doi: 10.1016/j.ijcha.2020.100489. eCollection 2020 Apr.


Background: Recent advances in the field of congenital heart disease (CHD) have significantly improved the overall prognosis. Now more attention is being given to health-related quality of life (HRQoL) and promotion of physical activity. Non-invasive relaxation therapy may be effective in cardiac patients concerned with exercise-induced dyspnoea. The SOPHROCARE randomised trial aims to assess the impact of Caycedian Sophrology on cardiopulmonary fitness in adolescents and young adults with CHD.

Methods: The SOPHROCARE trial is a nationwide, multicentre, randomised, controlled study in CHD patients aged from 13 to 25 years old. Patients will be randomised into 2 groups (8 Sophrology group sessions vs. no intervention). The primary outcome is the change in percent predicted maximum oxygen uptake (VO2max) between baseline and 12-month follow-up. A total of 94 patients in each group is required to observe a significant increase of 10% in VO2max with a power of 80% and an alpha risk of 5%. The secondary outcomes are: clinical outcomes, cardiopulmonary exercise test parameters (VE/VCO2 slope, ventilatory anaerobic threshold, oxygen pulse, respiratory response to hypercapnia), health-related quality of life score (PedsQL), physical and psychological status.

Conclusion: After focusing on the survival in CHD, current research is opening on secondary prevention and patient-related outcomes. We sought to assess in the SOPHROCARE trial, if a Sophrology program, could improve exercise capacity and quality of life in youth with CHD.

Trial registration: (NCT03999320).

Keywords: Congenital heart defect; Exercise capacity; Health-related quality of life; Relaxation; Sophrology; VO2max.

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