Electrical stimulation of skeletal muscles: An alternative to aerobic exercise training in patients with chronic heart failure?
|Year of publication||2006|
|Type||Article in Periodical|
|Magazine / Source||International Heart Journal|
|MU Faculty or unit|
|Field||Cardiovascular diseases incl. cardiosurgery|
|Keywords||Heart failure;rehabilitation;exercise;functional capacity;electrical stimulation;strength muscle;home-based training|
|Description||The aim of this study was to investigate whether electrical stimulation of skeletal muscles could represent a rehabilitation alternative for patients with chronic heart failure (CHF). Thirty patients with CHF and NYHA class II-III were randomly assigned to a rehabilitation program using either electrical stimulation of skeletal muscles or bicycle training. Patients in the first group (n = 15) had 8 weeks of home-based low-frequency electrical stimulation (LFES) applied simultaneously to the quadriceps and calf muscles of both legs (1 h/day for 7 days/week); patients in the second group (n = 15) underwent 8 weeks of 40 minute aerobic exercise (3 times a week). After the 8-week period significant increases in several functional parameters were observed in both groups: maximal VO2 uptake (LFES group: from 17.5+/-4.4 mL/kg/min to 18.3+/-4.2 mL/kg/min, P 0.05; bicycle group: from 18.1+/-3.9 mL/kg/min to 19.3+/-4.1 mL/kg/min, P 0.01), maximal workload (LFES group: from 84.3+/-15.2 W to 95.9+/-9.8 W, P 0.05; bicycle group: from 91.2+/-13.4 W to 112.9+/-10.8 W, P 0.01), distance walked in 6 minutes (LFES group: from 398+/-105 m to 435+/-112 m, P 0.05; bicycle group: from 425+/-118 m to 483+/-120 m, P 0.03), and exercise duration (LFES group: from 488+/-45 seconds to 568+/-120 seconds, P 0.05; bicycle group: from 510+/-90 seconds to 611+/-112 seconds, P 0.03). These results demonstrate that an improvement of exercise capacities can be achieved either by classical exercise training or by home-based electrical stimulation. LFES should be considered as a valuable alternative to classical exercise training in patients with CHF.|