Ostrowska M; Rzepka-Cholasińska A; Pietrzykowski Ł; Michalski P; Kosobucka-Ozdoba A; Jasiewicz M; Kasprzak M; Kryś J; Kubica A;
Journal of clinical medicine [J Clin Med] 2023 Jan 04; Vol. 12 (2).
Date of Electronic Publication: 2023 Jan 04.
Up to 80% of COVID-19 survivors experience prolonged symptoms known as long COVID-19. The aim of this study was to evaluate the effects of a multidisciplinary rehabilitation program in patients with long COVID-19. The rehabilitation program was composed of physical training (aerobic, resistance, and breathing exercises), education, and group psychotherapy. After 6 weeks of rehabilitation in 97 patients with long COVID-19, body composition analysis revealed a significant decrease of abdominal fatty tissue (from 2.75 kg to 2.5 kg; p = 0.0086) with concomitant increase in skeletal muscle mass (from 23.2 kg to 24.2 kg; p = 0.0104). Almost 80% of participants reported dyspnea improvement assessed with the modified Medical Research Council scale. Patients’ physical capacity assessed with the 6 Minute Walking Test increased from 320 to 382.5 m ( p < 0.0001), the number of repetitions in the 30 s Chair Stand Test improved from 13 to 16 ( p < 0.0001), as well as physical fitness in the Short Physical Performance Battery Test from 14 to 16 ( p < 0.0001). The impact of fatigue on everyday functioning was reduced in the Modified Fatigue Impact Scale from 37 to 27 ( p < 0.0001). Cardiopulmonary exercise test did not show any change. The multidisciplinary rehabilitation program has improved body composition, dyspnea, fatigue and physical capacity in long COVID-19 patients.