Table 1

Study characteristics of the studies included

Li et al15Retrospective cohort studyCanada345 patients
Mean age:
51±14 years
Duration: 1.5 to 2 hours per session 3 times per week; 47±59 sessions.
Interventions: Stretching aerobic exercise and resistance training. Aerobic exercise: arm ergometer, cycle ergometer, treadmill training. Duration increased up to 20 min of treadmill. Resistance and stretching: biceps, triceps, quadriceps, hamstrings and hip muscles.
- Exercise capacity: 6MWT
- Quality of life: SF-36; SGRQ, Visual Analogue Scale, Standard Gamble and EQ-5D.
Florian et al16Prospective studyBrazil58 patients
Mean age:
46±14 years
Duration: 90 min, 3 times/week (36 meetings).
Intervention: Warming-up: breathing exercises associated with arm raising. Muscle strengthening: arm and leg exercises with an initial load of 30% of one repetition maximum testing and with one set of 10 repetitions per exercise (the load was increased by 0.5 kg every 7 sessions according to the patient tolerance). Aerobic exercises: performed on a treadmill, beginning at 60% of the speed of the 6MWT (progressive protocol every 6 min until reaching 30 min). The speed was increased by 0.3 km/h every 7 sessions.
- Exercise capacity: 6MWT.
- Health-related quality of life: SF-36.
Jastrzebski et al17Quasi-experimental studyPoland22 male patients
Mean age:
50.4 years
Duration: Two 6-week cycles: 2-week hospital-based rehabilitation and 4-week home-based rehabilitation.
Interventions: Nordic walking at 75% of maximal heart rate-monitored heart rate and oxygen saturation at first session at hospital. Distance according to 6MWT.
- Quality of life: SF-36.
- Dyspnoea: MRC questionnaire.
- Exercise capacity: 6MWT.
- Pulmonary function: spirometry.
Gloeckl et al18Randomised control trialGermany60 patients
Mean age:
53±6 years
Duration: 3 weeks inpatient rehabilitation programme (5 to 6 days/week).
Interventions: Interval training: cycling at 100% peak work rate for 30 s alternating with 30 s of rest.
Continuous training: cycling at 60% of peak work rate.
- Exercise capacity: 6MWT.
- Lung function: MasterScreen Body Plethysmograph.
- Health-related quality of life: SF-36.
Kenn et al19Retrospective studyGermany811 patients
-COPD(n=360) 54±7.6 years
-AATD(n=127) 51±6.3 years
-ILD(n=195) 54±8.7 years
31±7.4 years
45±12.9 years
Duration: 5 to 6 days per week yielding 25 to 30 sessions.
Interventions: Supervised sessions of endurance training 10–20 min at 60% of peak work rate, elaborated from an incremental cycle test; 30–45 min training sessions, including individual strength training (four to six exercises with 3×20 repetitions at the maximum tolerated load), specialised breathing techniques and controlled coughing exercises along with active physiotherapy. Twice per week (for 1 hour), all patients participated in educational sessions addressing self-management, coping strategies, nutritional interventions and structured lessons developed for candidates for LTx: postoperative drug management, living with the new organ, and psychosocial aspects after LTx.
- Exercise capacity: 6MWT.
- Quality of life: SF36.
- Lung function and blood gas analyses: spirometry and body plethysmography.
Manzetti et al20Randomised control trialUSA9 patients
Mean age:
40±10 years
Duration: 3 times/week for 6 weeks (education classes); 2 times/week (exercise classes).
Interventions: Education+exercise: the same educational programme plus exercise programme that included treadmill, bicycle ergometer, light aerobic exercises and light upper extremity weight training within the participant's physical capacity. Education alone: classes in anatomy, physiology and pathophysiology, home oxygen systems, stress reduction techniques and alternative sexual techniques taught by a multidisciplinary team of healthcare providers.
- Exercise tolerance: 6MWT and cardiopulmonary exercise testing.
- Quality of life: QWB, QLI and SFSD.
  • 6MWT, 6 min walk test; AATD, α-1 antitrypsin deficiency; COPD, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease; CF, cystic fibrosis; EQ-5D, EuroQol five dimensions questionnaire; ILD, interstitial lung disease; LTx, lung transplantation; MRC, medical research council questionnaire; QWB, quality of well-being scale; QLI, quality of life index; SF-36, Short Form 36 questionnaire; SFSD, symptom frequency/symptom distress scale; SGRQ, Saint George respiratory questionnaire.