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To study physical activity and sleep in Fontan patients and healthy controls before and after an endurance training program, and after 1 year.
Fontan patients (n = 30) and healthy controls (n = 25) wore accelerometers for seven consecutive days and nights during a school week before and after a 12-week endurance training program and after 1 year.
Patients had similar sleep duration and sleep efficiency as healthy controls. Latency to sleep onset in minutes was longer for patients than controls (22.4 (4.3–55.3) minutes versus 14.8 (8.6–29.4) minutes, p < 0.01). More time in moderate-to-vigorous activity daytime was correlated with increased sleep time (p < 0.05; r2 = 0.20), improved sleep efficiency (p < 0.01; r2 = 0.24) and less time as wake after sleep onset (p < 0.05; r2 = 0.21) for patients but not controls. Sleep variables did not change after the exercise intervention for patients or controls. After 1 year, patients had decreased total sleep time, decreased sleep efficiency, increased accelerometer counts during sleep and more time as wake after sleep onset during sleep time, but not controls.
Fontan patients have prolonged latency to sleep onset compared with controls. More time in physical activities was correlated with better sleep quality for the patients. Also, subjects with low sleep efficiency and long latency to sleep onset may benefit most from physical exercise. These patients should be encouraged to engage in individually designed physical exercise as this could improve sleep quality.
Atrial septal defect is the third most common CHD. A hemodynamically significant atrial septal defect causes volume overload of the right side of the heart. Preterm children may suffer from both pulmonary and cardiac comorbidities, including altered myocardial function. The aim of this study was to compare the rate of adverse events following atrial septal defect closure in preterm- and term-born children.
We performed a retrospective cohort study including children born in Sweden, who had a surgical or percutaneous atrial septal defect closure at the children’s hospitals in Lund and Stockholm, between 2000 and 2014, assessing time to the first event within 1 month or 1 year. We analysed differences in the number of and the time to events between the preterm and term cohort using the Kaplan–Meier survival curve, a generalised model applying zero-inflated Poisson distribution and Gary-Anderson’s method.
Overall, 413 children were included in the study. Of these, 93 (22.5%) were born prematurely. The total number of adverse events was 178 (110 minor and 68 major). There was no difference between the cohorts in the number of events, whether within 1 month or within a year, between major (p = 0.69) and minor (p = 0.84) events or frequencies of multiple events (p = 0.92).
Despite earlier procedural age, larger atrial septal defects, and higher comorbidity than term children, preterm children appear to have comparable risk for complications during the first year after surgical or percutaneous closure.
The objective of this research was to study lung function, physical capacity, and effect of endurance training in children and adolescents after Fontan palliation compared with healthy matched controls.
Fontan patients (n=30) and healthy matched control patients (n=25) performed dynamic and static spirometry, and pulmonary diffusing capacity and maximal oxygen uptake tests, before and after a 12-week endurance training programme and at follow-up after 1 year.
Fontan patients had a restrictive lung pattern, reduced pulmonary diffusing capacity (4.27±1.16 versus 6.61±1.88 mmol/kPa/minute, p<0.001), and a reduced maximal oxygen uptake (35.0±5.1 versus 43.7±8.4 ml/minute/kg, p<0.001) compared with controls. Patients had air trapping with a higher portion of residual volume of total lung capacity compared with controls (26±6 versus 22±5%, p<0.05). Vital capacity increased for patients, from 2.80±0.97 to 2.91±0.95 L, p<0.05, but not for controls after endurance training. The difference in diffusing capacity between patients and controls appeared to be greater with increasing age.
Fontan patients have a restrictive lung pattern, reduced pulmonary diffusing capacity, and reduced maximal oxygen uptake compared with healthy controls. Endurance training may improve vital capacity in Fontan patients. The normal increase in pulmonary diffusing capacity with age and growth was reduced in Fontan patients, which is concerning. Apart from general health effects, exercise may improve lung function in young Fontan patients and should be encouraged.
Children after Fontan palliation have reduced exercise capacity and quality of life. Our aim was to study whether endurance training could improve physical capacity and quality of life in Fontan patients.
Fontan patients (n=30) and healthy age- and gender-matched control subjects (n=25) performed a 6-minute walk test at submaximal capacity and a maximal cycle ergometer test. Quality of life was assessed with Pediatric Quality of Life Inventory Version 4.0 questionnaires for children and parents. All tests were repeated after a 12-week endurance training programme and after 1 year.
Patients had decreased submaximal and maximal exercise capacity (maximal oxygen uptake 35.0±5.1 ml/minute per·kg versus 43.7±8.4 ml/minute·per·kg, p<0.001) and reported a lower quality of life score (70.9±9.9 versus 85.7±8.0, p<0.001) than controls. After training, patients improved their submaximal exercise capacity in a 6-minute walk test (from 590.7±65.5 m to 611.8±70.9 m, p<0.05) and reported a higher quality of life (p<0.01), but did not improve maximal exercise capacity. At follow-up, submaximal exercise capacity had increased further and improved quality of life was sustained. The controls improved their maximal exercise capacity (p<0.05), but not submaximal exercise capacity or quality of life after training. At follow-up, improvement of maximal exercise capacity was sustained.
We believe that an individualised endurance training programme for Fontan patients improves submaximal exercise capacity and quality of life in Fontan patients and the effect on quality of life appears to be long-lasting.
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