A study from the National Institute for Health Research Leicester Biomedical Research Center suggests that exercise may be beneficial for the recovery of COVID-19 and help reduce chronic respiratory symptoms. Covid-19 infection. The researchers are hopeful that this finding will help develop effective rehabilitation programs for COVID-19 survivors.
The study, published May 6, 2021, followed 30 individuals recovering from COVID-19. The researchers examined participants in exercise sessions twice a week for six weeks. Biweekly sessions include aerobic exercise (walking and treadmill-based), strength training for the upper and lower limbs, and educational tutorials on how to help manage muscles. symptoms after infection.
Post-COVID-19 symptoms include fatigue, difficulty sleeping, and shortness of breath. Individuals were recommended for study either by their family physician, at their COVID-19 follow-up, or through a compliance program. Only those with symptoms that interfere with daily life were included in this study. COVID-19 survivors with shortness of breath symptoms, such as loss of taste, were not included in this study.
The study compared participants ’initial and final symptom assessments to measure improvement. Exercise capacity was assessed using both the endurance and interval-based shuttle walk test. Fatigue was measured using feedback from participants ’self-assessment, as well as the Functional Assessment of the Chronic Illness Therapy Fatig Scale. The COPD Assessment Test (CAT) is also used as an indicator of respiratory health.
Significant improvements were seen in exercise capacity, fatigue, and breathing. The mean stop-stop and endurance-based route marks of the shuttle run increase by 112 minutes and 544 seconds, respectively.1 There was a mean improvement of five points on the Functional Assessment of the Chronic Illness Therapy Fizana Scale and a mean three-point improvement on the COPD Assessment Test of 30 participants who tried exercise for COVID- 19 healing.
The study found that of the participants, 87% were admitted to the hospital with COVID-19, with an average of 10 days of stay. Fourteen percent of the participants required mechanical ventilation during their treatment with COVID-19 and 4% had an initial respiratory condition.1
The researchers reported that even if the human body could naturally recover from the infection, it was likely that the significant reduction in symptoms was seen as a result of this study. They cited that there was a mean 125 days between infection and enrollment in the study, so the likelihood that a significant natural recovery would occur 125 days after infection was unlikely.1
The study concluded that the use of exercise for the treatment of COVID-19 was safe and showed improved symptoms of respiratory, exercise capacity, and fatigue. None of the individuals dropped out of the program and none of the participants experienced worsening symptoms. According to co -author of the study Professor Sally Singh, “the high completion rate suggests that patients find it to be an acceptable treatment”.2
Much research needs to be done to better understand how to effectively adapt pulmonary rehabilitation techniques for pre-existing COVID-19 symptoms.
- Daynes, E. et al. (2021). Early rehabilitation experiences for post -COVID individuals to improve fatigue, exercise capacity and breathing and thinking – A cohort study. Chronic Respiratory Disease; 18: 14799731211015691. doi: 10.1177 / 14799731211015691.
- Exercise can help support recovery in patients with chronic COVID symptoms, the study found. (2021). The National Institute for Health Research News Release. American Association for the Advancement of Science. Retrieved from https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2021-05/nifh-ech050721.php.
- Photo by Joanna Dubaj from pixel