Content » Vol 49, Issue 3

Short communication

Cardiac rehabilitation for women with breast cancer and treatment-related heart failure compared with coronary artery disease: A retrospective study

Alis Bonsignore, Susan Marzolini, Paul Oh
Toronto Rehabilitation Institute/University Health Network , M5S 2C9 Toronto, Canada. E-mail: alis.bonsignore@uhn.ca
DOI: 10.2340/16501977-2203

Abstract

Objective: To examine clinical outcomes and completion rates of cardiac rehabilitation in women with breast cancer and treatment-related heart failure.
Methods: Data for women with breast cancer and treatment-related heart failure were compared with those for age-matched women with coronary artery disease. Retrospective data were obtained from the Toronto Rehabilitation Institute database for dates between 1998 and 2011, for cardiopulmonary exercise test results at baseline and 6 months, body composition measures, and cardiac rehabilitation completion rates.
Results: A total of 29 women with breast cancer and treatment-related heart failure (mean 57 years (standard deviation (SD) 9.4)) and 29 age-matched women with coronary artery disease were identified. There was no significant difference between the proportion of women with breast cancer and treatment-related heart failure and those with coronary artery disease who completed the programme. Peak aerobic power (VO2peak) increased in the breast cancer and treatment-related heart failure group (mean 16.2 ml–1.kg–1.min–1 (SD 3.4) to mean 18.5 ml–1.kg–1.min–1 (SD 4.5) ; p = 0.002) and in the coronary artery disease group (mean 18.9 ml–1.kg–1.min–1 (SD 4.5) to mean 20.8 ml–1.kg–1.min–1 (SD 4.9); p = 0.01). Body fat percentage increased in the breast cancer and treatment-related heart failure group (mean 34.8% (SD 8.5) to mean 36.3% (SD 6.9); p = 0.04).
Conclusion: Women with breast cancer and treatment-related heart failure participating in cardiac rehabilitation demonstrate similar significant gains in VO2peak and similar completion rates to those of age-matched women with coronary artery disease. Further research is needed to determine interventions that improve body composition in women with breast cancer and treatment-related heart failure.

Lay Abstract

Outcomes to Cardiac Rehabilitation for Women with Breast Cancer and Treatment-related Heart Problems
The influence of cancer treatments on the heart is a major health concern following a breast cancer diagnosis that leads to reduced physical functioning. Cardiac Rehabilitation is known to improve health outcomes for individuals with heart problems and may benefit women with breast cancer and treatment related heart problems. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to determine if an exercise based cardiac rehabilitation program would improve physical functioning (measured as cardiopulmonary fitness) and body composition (body mass index, waist circumference, body fat percent) for women with breast cancer and treatment related heart problems. Outcomes of this investigation demonstrate that cardiopulmonary fitness improved and body fat percent increased following a 6-month exercise based cardiac rehabilitation program. These changes may improve physical functioning for breast cancer survivors, although further research is needed for improving changes in body composition.

Comments

Do you want to comment on this paper? The comments will show up here and if appropriate the comments will also separately be forwarded to the authors. You need to login/create an account to comment on articles. Click here to login/create an account.
Advertisement