Physical Activity and Mortality in Patients With Stable Coronary Heart Disease
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BACKGROUND: Recommendations for physical activity in patients with stable coronary heart disease (CHD) are based on modest evidence. OBJECTIVES: The authors analyzed the association between self-reported exercise and mortality in patients with stable CHD. METHODS: A total of 15,486 patients from 39 countries with stable CHD who participated in the STABILITY (Stabilization of Atherosclerotic Plaque by Initiation of Darapladib Therapy) study completed questions at baseline on hours spent each week taking mild, moderate, and vigorous exercise. Associations between the volume of habitual exercise in metabolic equivalents of task hours/week and adverse outcomes during a median follow-up of 3.7 years were evaluated. RESULTS: A graded decrease in mortality occurred with increased habitual exercise that was steeper at lower compared with higher exercise levels. Doubling exercise volume was associated with lower all-cause mortality (unadjusted hazard ratio [HR]: 0.82; 95% confidence interval [CI]: 0.79 to 0.85; adjusting for covariates, HR: 0.90; 95% CI: 0.87 to 0.93). These associations were similar for cardiovascular mortality (unadjusted HR: 0.83; 95% CI: 0.80 to 0.87; adjusted HR: 0.92; 95% CI: 0.88 to 0.96), but myocardial infarction and stroke were not associated with exercise volume after adjusting for covariates. The association between decrease in mortality and greater physical activity was stronger in the subgroup of patients at higher risk estimated by the ABC-CHD (Age, Biomarkers, Clinical-Coronary Heart Disease) risk score (p for interaction = 0.0007). CONCLUSIONS: In patients with stable CHD, more physical activity was associated with lower mortality. The largest benefits occurred between sedentary patient groups and between those with the highest mortality risk.
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