Effects of exercise training on heart rate variability after coronary angioplasty

Mei Wun Tsai, Wei Chu Chie, Terry B.J. Kuo, Ming Fong Chen, Jen Pei Liu, Tony Hsiu Hsi Chen, Ying Tai Wu*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

38 Scopus citations


Background and Purpose. Cardiac autonomic dysfunction is associated with risk of restenosis and cardiovascular mortality in patients after percutaneous transluminal coronary angioplasty (PTCA). Analysis of heart rate variability (HRV) is an important, widely used method for assessing cardiac autonomic regulation. The purpose of this study was to investigate the effect of exercise training on HRV in subjects after PTCA. Subjects and Methods. A total of 84 subjects who had undergone PTCA were recruited for this study. The subjects (age [mean±SD]=57.0±9.3 years) were randomly assigned to either an exercise group to undergo an 8-week outpatient exercise program or a control group to undergo usual care. Heart rate variability was measured for 5 minutes in the supine resting position at baseline and at the end of 8 weeks. Results. The parasympathetically modulated HRV of the subjects in the exercise group increased significantly compared with the HRV of subjects in the control group. The effects of training on HRV were independent of angioplasty type (balloon or stent) and were unrelated to whether the subjects had received previous PTCA. Discussion and Conclusion. Exercise training can increase parasympathetic modulation of cardiac function in people after they have undergone successful PTCA. Our results suggest that analysis of HRV can be extended to assess the effect of exercise training on cardiac autonomic dysfunction in people after coronary angioplasty.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)626-635
Number of pages10
JournalPhysical Therapy
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 2006


  • Exercise training
  • Heart rate variability
  • Percutaneous transluminal coronary angioplasty


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