High-Intensity Interval Training in Heart Transplant Recipients: A Systematic Review with Meta-Analysis

posted on 21.02.2018 by Raphael José Perrier-Melo, Fernando Augusto Marinho dos Santos Figueira, Guilherme Veiga Guimarães, Manoel da Cunha Costa

Abstract Heart transplantation (HTx) is considered an efficient and gold-standard procedure for patients with end-stage heart failure. After surgery, patients have lower aerobic power (VO2max) and compensatory hemodynamic responses. The aim of the present study was to assess through a systematic review with meta-analysis whether high-intensity interval training (HIIT) can provide benefits for those parameters. This is a systematic review with meta-analysis, which searched the databases and data portals PubMed, Web of Science, Scopus, Science Direct and Wiley until December 2016 (pairs). The following terms and descriptors were used: “heart recipient” OR “heart transplant recipient” OR ”heart transplant” OR “cardiac transplant” OR “heart graft”. Descriptors via DeCS and Mesh were: “heart transplantation’’ OR “cardiac transplantation”. The words used in combination (AND) were: “exercise training” OR “interval training” OR “high intensity interval training” OR “high intensity training” OR “anaerobic training” OR “intermittent training” OR “sprint training”. The initial search identified 1064 studies. Then, only those studies assessing the influence of HIIT on the post-HTx period were added, resulting in three studies analyzed. The significance level adopted was 0.05. Heart transplant recipients showed significant improvement in VO2peak, heart rate and peak blood pressure in 8 to 12 weeks of intervention.