Does age make a difference in the efficacy of exercise-based cardiac rehabilitation? According to a recent study published by a group of French scientists in the Canadian Journal of Cardiology, the benefits of CR cuts across ages with improvements in mental and physical health. Additionally, the benefits were more marked for people with greater physical impairment at baseline. However, the degree of improvement in psychological health was age-dependent.
733 patients were selected for this research. They were divided into three groups based on their age: young (< 65 years old), old (65-80 years old), and very old (≥ 80 years old). The team studied the participants’ physical health and their psychological variables by scoring their depression and anxiety.
They found that performances improved across all age groups in all parameters. Although age was a significant consideration at baseline, at post-CR it ceased to be a factor. In fact, lower physical scores were associated with better post-CR performance. However, post-CR scores the improvement in mental health was more pronounced for patients in the ‘old’ category.