Introduction Pulmonary rehabilitation is an effective intervention for patients with COPD. There is now also good evidence of benefit for patients with ILD We have compared the outcome of the same PR programme in patients with COPD and ILD.
Methods Patients with various forms of ILD (predominantly IPF or UIP) were matched with the same number of COPD patients for baseline MRC grade and for age. All patients had completed the same 7 week, 14 visit hospital based out patient PR program.
Outcome Measures and desaturation during exercise were compared between the two groups.
Results 51 ILD patients, age range 34–85, mean initial MRC grade 3.5(0.94), 30 male were compared with 51 COPD patients, age range 47–85, mean baseline MRC grade 3.5(0.94), 31 male.
Discussion Our PR program produced clinically important improvements in ISWT and all domains of the CRDQ for COPD patients. ILD patients produced a smaller mean change in ISWT although this was not statistically significant between the groups. ILD patients also showed smaller changes in all domains of the CRDQ although again this was not statistically significant between the groups. The improvement in ESWT was similar in both groups. Desaturation during the baseline ISWT was more severe in the ILD group regardless of oxygen usage and despite a marginally higher pre-exercise value. This may account for the lower ISWT value seen in these patients. PR produces measurable improvements in both groups of patients. Interpretation is hampered by a lack of defined MCID values for ILD patients.
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