Top of page
Health

Aerobic exercise could improve recovery after stroke

Rehabilitation for most stroke survivors rarely involves aerobic fitness. But new research suggests they might be missing out on a significant healing opportunity.

An analysis of 19 studies found stroke survivors who completed a group-based aerobic exercise program similar to widely available cardiac rehabilitation programs significantly improved their endurance and walking capacity.

The analysis was published in Journal of the American Heart Association.

Stroke remains the leading cause of disability in the United States. Doctors often prescribe physical therapy. But survivors often fail to keep up with extended rehabilitation activity unless they have support, the analysis said.

“The physical therapy we currently provide to patients after a stroke focuses more on improving the ability to move and move well rather than on increasing how far and long you can move,” lead author Elizabeth Regan said in a news release. But “it doesn’t matter how well you can walk if your endurance level keeps you at home.”

Mixed aerobic activity provided the best result, followed by walking. Cycling or recumbent stepping was the least effective but still significant. Participants benefited whether they started an aerobic exercise program one month or one year after their strokes, Regan said.

 

You might also like

teen sleeping teen sleeping

Poor sleep in teenage years increase risk of multiple sclerosis

Insufficient and disturbed sleep during the teenage years may heighten…

Profile of a bearded man head with symbol neurons in brain Profile of a bearded man head with symbol neurons in brain

New test could detect Alzheimer’s disease 3.5 years before clinical diagnosis

New research from the Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology & Neuroscience…

Nurse holding blood test tubes Nurse holding blood test tubes

New blood test more accurate in identifying osteoarthritis progression

A new blood test that can identify progression of osteoarthritis…

Elderly patient and caregiver spending time together Elderly patient and caregiver spending time together

Study reveals pandemic increases burden on self-directed caregivers

As the U.S. population ages, the number of people receiving…