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Rehabilitation at home is as effective as in a centre

By Yvette Martyn

Cardiac rehabilitation that takes place at the patient's home is as effective as centre-based rehabilitation, according to a gold standard review.

The Cochrane review analysed 12 studies containing 1,938 participants to review the effectiveness of the rehabilitation methods on mortality, morbidity, health related quality of life and modifiable cardiac risk factors.

The researchers found no difference in the outcomes between the two types of rehabilitation and no consistent difference in the healthcare costs.

But there was a trend towards home-based interventions producing higher levels of adherence.

Lead author Dr Rod Taylor, associate professor in health services research at the Peninsula College of Medicine and Dentistry in Plymouth said: ‘Home- and centre-based cardiac rehabilitation appears to be equally effective in improving the clinical and health-related quality of life outcomes in acute MI and revascularisation patients.'

He added that the findings ‘support the extension of home-based cardiac rehabilitation programmes such as the Heart Manual to give patients a choice, which may have an impact on uptake of cardiac rehabilitation.'

Details of home-based cardiac rehab is available at www.theheartmanual.com.

Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews 2010, Issue 1. Art. No.: CD007130

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