J Cardiopulm Rehabil Prev. 2017 Jul 19. doi: 10.1097/HCR.0000000000000270. [Epub ahead of print]
PURPOSE: To investigate the effects of exercise training on ventilatory
efficiency and physiological responses to submaximal exercise in subjects with
small abdominal aortic aneurysm (AAA).
METHODS: Sixty-five male patients (72.3 ± 7.0 years) were randomized to exercise
training (n = 33) or usual care group (n = 32). Exercise subjects participated in
a training groups for 3 mo. Cardiopulmonary exercise testing was performed before
and after the study period and peak VO2, the ventilatory threshold (VT), the
oxygen uptake efficiency slope (OUES), and the VE2/VCO2 slope were identified.
Baseline work rates at VT were matched to examine cardiopulmonary responses after
RESULTS: Significant interactions indicating improvements before and after
training in the exercise group were noted for time (P < .01), VO2 (P < .01), and
work rate (P < .01) at the VT. At peak effort, significant interactions were
noted for time (P < .01) and work rate (P < .01), while borderline significance
was noted for absolute (P = .07) and relative (P = .04) VO2. Significant
interactions were observed for the OUES both when using all exercise data (P =
.04) and when calculated up to the VT (P < .01). For the VE2/VCO2 slope,
significance was noted only when calculated up to the VT (P = .04). After
training, heart rate, VE, VO2 and respiratory exchange ratio were significantly
attenuated for the same baseline work rate only in the exercise group (all P <
CONCLUSIONS: Exercise training improves ventilatory efficiency in patients with
small AAA. In addition, patients who exercised exhibited less demanding
cardiorespiratory responses to submaximal effort.