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Obese patients' characteristics and weight loss outcomes in cardiac rehabilitation: An observational study of registry data

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JournalInternational Journal of Cardiology
DateSubmitted - 4 Jan 2021
DateAccepted/In press - 28 Apr 2021
DateE-pub ahead of print (current) - 30 Apr 2021
Early online date30/04/21
Original languageEnglish


AIM: Cardiac rehabilitation (CR) guidelines advocate weight loss for obese patients but mean weight loss is small. We sought to determine the extent to which obese patients' characteristics prior to CR predict weight loss.

METHODS: An observational, pre- and post CR study of routine practice using the UK National Audit of Cardiac Rehabilitation dataset was undertaken. Backward, stepwise, multiple linear regression analysis was used to identify characteristics prior to CR that predicted weight change in obese patients.

RESULTS: In 29,601 obese patients undertaking CR, mean weight loss was 0.9 kg (SD 4.3; p < 0.001) in men (74% of sample) and 0.5 kg (SD 3.9; p < 0.001) in women. Smoking cessation since the cardiac event independently predicted less weight loss by 1.2 kg (95% CI; 0.9, 1.5 kg; p < 0.001). Diabetes, cardiac surgery, living in a deprived area, being female, low fitness levels and pain independently predicted less weight loss during CR. Higher initial weight, greater age and being employed predicted increased weight loss.

CONCLUSION: This is the first study to identify how the characteristics of obese patients independently predict different amounts of weight loss during CR in free-living individuals. It is also the largest, registry-based study to investigate predictors of weight loss in obese patients in CR. Knowledge of the extent to which obese patients' characteristics predict more or less weight loss can aid: the generation of guidelines; agreement of realistic goals with patients; and tailoring of weight management support.

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