Regional ventricular performance and exercise training in children and youngadults after repair of tetralogy of fallot: randomized controlled pilot study

Circ Cardiovasc Imaging. 2015 Apr;8(4). pii: e002006. doi: 10.1161/CIRCIMAGING.114.002006.

Regional ventricular performance and exercise training in children and youngadults after repair of tetralogy of fallot: randomized controlled pilot study.

Duppen N1Geerdink LM1Kuipers IM1Bossers SS1Koopman LP1van Dijk AP1Roos-Hesselink JW1De Korte CL1Helbing WA2Kapusta L1.

Comment: In this randomized controlled pilot study, the effects of an exercise training program on regional ventricular function in children and young adult with corrected tetralogy of Fallot was evaluated. A total of 28 TOF patients underwent a 12-week aerobic dynamic exercise training program and 20 patients were included in the control group. There was no difference between the exercise and control group in the primary outcome measure: change in RV free wall peak velocity E’. In addition, global measurements of RV function, volume and PR fraction as assessed by cardiovascular magnetic resonance imaging remained unchanged. Not surprisingly, peak work load during exercise testing improved significantly in the exercise training group.

The findings of this pilot study are reassuring, confirming that exercise does not have unfavorable effects on regional or global RV function in young TOF patients.  The improvements in work load achieved suggest that stimulating an active lifestyle may also improve functional capacity. A sedentary lifestyle may contribute to the reduced exercise capacity (75-80% of expected) seen in many of these young patients. The findings of this study warrant further investigation on the clinical effects of exercise programs in larger and more diverse groups of CHD patients