Perceived Lack of Social Support Impacts Exercise for Heart Failure Patients

Exercise can be difficult for heart failure patients due to social and practical barriers.

Although supervised aerobic physical activity is a proven therapy for heart failure patients, lack of social support and practical barriers such as lack of transportation, keep many patients from benefiting from cardiac rehab programs, according to new research in Circulation: Heart Failure, an American Heart Association journal.

“Patients, family members, and healthcare providers should work together to find solutions to the barriers preventing a patient from participating in a structured exercise programs, because exercise programs can help patients manage their condition,” said Lauren B. Cooper, MD, lead author of the study and a fellow in cardiovascular diseases at the Duke University School of Medicine in Durham, North Carolina.

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