Abstract WMP88: Modified Rehabilitation has Long-Term Impact on Walking for Individuals with a TIA
Background and Purpose: Transient Ischemic Attacks (TIAs) often signal looming health threats. If not addressed, TIAs lead to stroke in over half of individuals. Usual care following a TIA typically is only pharmacological, in spite of the known potential for exercise to reduce stroke risk factors. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to determine the long-term (1-year) impact of a modified rehabilitation program on individuals who had a TIA.
Method: In this single armed pilot study, we modified cardiac rehabilitation (typically offered to individuals post-myocardial infarction), for individuals with a TIA. The standard cardiac rehabilitation structure (1.5 hrs per session, 3x per week, for 6 weeks) was implemented in the month following TIA. Exercises increased progressively in terms of speed or elevation until the workload was identified by participants as “somewhat hard” (approximately 12-14 on the Borg Scale of Perceived Exertion). We measured patients pre- and post- the 6 week intervention, and then again at 6 months and 1 year post-intervention to determine long-term impact.
Results: Fourteen participants completed measures at 1-year. While systolic and diastolic blood pressure (SBP, DBP) reduced substantially from pre- to post- intervention (SBP= 130.5 pre-test, 124.14 post-test; DBP= 72.14 pre-test, 67.57 post-test), these changes did not persist at 1-year. However, repeated measures analysis of variance (RM ANOVA) with Greenhouse-Geisser correction determined that mean gait speed improved significantly over 1-year (F(1.697, 22.057) = 18.412, p=.000). RM ANOVA with Bonferroni correction also indicated that endurance statistically improved over 1 year (F(3, 39) = 7.491, p =.000).
Discussion: Results revealed that both gait speed and endurance increased post-intervention, and remained higher than pre-intervention at 1-year post-TIA. Improvements in gait speed and endurance have potential to increase participation in community life, as individuals may be more likely to engage in activities if their mobility is enhanced. This increased engagement may lead to increased physical activity, which may reduce stroke risk factors.
- © 2012 by American Heart Association, Inc.