Hybrid and Traditional Cardiac Rehabilitation in a Rural Area: A RETROSPECTIVE STUDY

Cassie M. Williamson-Reisdorph, Whitney T. Larson, Laura B. Porisch, John C. Quindry

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Purpose: Cardiac rehabilitation is a prescribed exercise intervention that reduces cardiovascular mortality, secondary events, and hospitalizations. Hybrid cardiac rehabilitation (HBCR) is an alternative method that overcomes barriers to participation, such as travel distance and transportation issues. To date, comparisons of HBCR and traditional cardiac rehabilitation (TCR) are limited to randomized controlled trials, which may influence outcomes due to supervision associated with clinical research. Coincidental to the COVID-19 pandemic, we investigated HBCR effectiveness (peak metabolic equivalents [peak METs]), resting heart rate (RHR), resting systolic (SBP) and diastolic blood pressure (DBP), body mass index (BMI), and depression outcomes (Patient Health Questionnaire-9 [PHQ-9]). Methods: Via retrospective analysis, TCR and HBCR were examined during the COVID-19 pandemic (October 1, 2020, and March 31, 2022). Key dependent variables were quantified at baseline (pre) and discharge (post). Completion was determined by participation in 18 monitored TCR exercise sessions and four monitored HBCR exercise sessions. Results: Peak METs increased at post-TCR and HBCR (P <.001); however, TCR resulted in greater improvements (P =.034). The PHQ-9 scores were decreased in all groups (P <.001), while post-SBP and BMI did not improve (SBP: P =.185, BMI: P =.355). Post-DBP and RHR increased (DBP: P =.003, RHR: P =.032), although associations between intervention and program completion were not observed (P =.172). Conclusions: Peak METs and depression metric outcomes (PHQ-9) improved with TCR and HBCR. Improvements in exercise capacity were greater with TCR; however, HBCR did not produce inferior results by comparison, an outcome that may have been essential during the first 18 mo of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)253-258
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Cardiopulmonary Rehabilitation and Prevention
Issue number4
StatePublished - Jul 1 2023


  • cardiac rehabilitation
  • exercise
  • home-based cardiac rehabilitation
  • Cardiac Rehabilitation/methods
  • Pandemics
  • COVID-19/epidemiology
  • Humans
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Receptors, Antigen, T-Cell


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