Pulmonary Rehabilitation: A Retrospective Study in Eastern North Carolina.
BACKGROUND: Pulmonary rehabilitation (PR) is an evidence-based measure to benefit chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) patients. Many patients have benefitted from our robust university hospital-based PR program. We have objectively assessed the benefit of our PR program for COPD patients in Eastern North Carolina. METHODS: We used retrospective chart review to collect data from all the patients who completed PR from January 1, 2012 through December 31, 2013. Data collection included quality-of-life scores using short-form 36 (SF-36) and 6-minute walk distance (6MWD) to measure exercise capacity before and after PR. We also collected data on COPD exacerbation frequency 1 year before and 1 year after PR. The data were analyzed using the statistical software Statistical Package for the Social Sciences version 22.0. RESULTS: We analyzed data from 51 patients with 4 categories of COPD: mild (n = 2), moderate (n = 12), severe (n = 23), and very severe (n = 14). The PR program resulted in improvement in 6MWD of an average of 263.8 feet (P < .01) and a decrease in COPD exacerbation frequency by 0.3 events per year (P < .05). There were mixed results for quality-of-life scores. LIMITATIONS: Our study was conducted at 1 center and thus involved a single COPD patient population with limited sample size. We did not follow patients long term to see whether the benefits were sustained. CONCLUSIONS: Our PR program resulted in a positive impact on exercise capacity, COPD exacerbation rate, and some aspects of quality of life.
Chalise, SN; Shaheen, HT; Rizwan, MZ; O'Brien, K; Shaw, R
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