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Original article

Vol. 142 No. 3334 (2012)

Impact of exercise training on inflammation and platelet activation in patients with intermittent claudication

  • Oliver Schlager
  • Alexandra Hammer
  • Aura Giurgea
  • Othmar Schuhfried
  • Veronika Fialka-Moser
  • Michael Gschwandtner
  • Renate Koppensteiner
  • Sabine Steiner
Cite this as:
Swiss Med Wkly. 2012;142:w13623


BACKROUND: Serum markers of inflammation and platelet activation are related to cardiovascular risk. Cardiovascular risk reduction is a major treatment goal in patients with peripheral arterial disease (PAD). Although current guidelines recommend supervised exercise training (SET) for PAD patients with intermittent claudication, its contribution to risk reduction remains unclear. Aim of the present study was to assess the impact of SET on inflammation and platelet activation as surrogates for cardiovascular risk.

METHODS: 53 patients with intermittent claudication were randomly assigned to SET on top of best medical treatment (BMT) for 6 months (SET-group) or to BMT only (BMT-group). High sensitivity C-reactive protein (hs-CRP), interleukin-6 (IL-6) and fibrinogen as well as soluble P-selectin (sP-sel), prothrombin fragment 1+2 (F1.2) and monocyte-platelet aggregates (MPA) were determined at study entry, after 3, 6 and 12 months.

RESULTS: While clinical improvement, reflected by an increase of walking capacity, was observed upon SET, no lasting changes of markers of inflammation and platelet activation were found within the SET-group during the training period. Compared to the BMT-group no improvements of these markers were observed in response to training at any time point (all p >0.05).

CONCLUSION: Regular SET added no further anti-inflammatory effect and had no effect on platelet activation when provided on top of BMT in PAD patients with intermittent claudication.


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