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Year : 2018  |  Volume : 2  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 61-64

Exercise in congenital heart disease: A contemporary review of the literature

Department of Pediatrics, University of Cincinnati College of Medicine; Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center, The Heart Institute, Cincinnati, OH, USA

Correspondence Address:
Adam W Powell
3333 Burnett Avenue, MLC 2003, Cincinnati, OH
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/hm.hm_38_19

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Congenital heart disease (CHD) patients tend to exercise less than their peers without heart disease. These patients often have exercise hesitancy or are not appropriately encouraged to exercise by their primary cardiologists. Regular exercise in the CHD population has been shown to increase fitness and lessen the incidence of obesity. There are positive psychosocial benefits of regular exercise including decreased mood disorders, improved academic performance, and ultimately improved quality of life. As physical activity is increasingly emphasized, a purposeful approach utilizing cardiopulmonary exercise testing for risk stratification and establishment of a baseline level of fitness is often helpful. Once exercise testing is complete, cardiopulmonary rehabilitation has been shown to improve measures of physical and mental fitness and should be considered in CHD patients in need of assistance with exercise.

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