Ergometer cycling improves the ambulatory function and cardiovascular fitness of stroke patients-a randomized controlled trial.
J Phys Ther Sci. 2019 Mar ;31(3):211-216. Epub 2019 Mar 19. PMID: 30936633
Ernest Kwesi Ofori
[Purpose] The aim of this study was to assess the effects of ergometer cycling on the ambulatory function and cardiovascular fitness of patients with stroke in the sub-acute phase. [Participants and Methods] Twenty (20) patients with stroke in the sub-acute phase were randomly allocated to either an ergometer cycling group (n=10) or a control group (n=10). The experimental (ergometer cycling) group performed cycling exercises in addition to conventional physiotherapy for 60 minutes per session, three times per week for 8 weeks. The control group only received conventional physiotherapy for the same duration as the experimental group. Assessments of participants' functional ambulatory category, ambulatory velocity, 6-minute walk test, heart rate and blood pressure were conducted at baseline and at the end of the 8-week intervention. [Results] The means of the ambulatory velocity and distance walked in 6 minutes were significantly higher in the ergometer cycling group than those of the control group at week 8. However, the increase in the FAC score was not significant. The means of heart rate, systolic and diastolic blood pressures significantly decreased in the ergometer cycling group compared to the control group at the end of the 8-week of intervention. [Conclusion] This study demonstrated that ergometer cycling improved the ambulatory function and cardiovascular fitness of patients with stroke in the sub-acute phase.