American Heart Journal vol:108 issue:2 pages:270-5
Beta-blocking agents are widely used in the treatment of patients with coronary artery disease. Their negative chronotropic and inotropic actions may alter the effects of physical training in cardiac rehabilitation programs. Therefore, resting and exercise cardiac output, stroke volume, heart rate, and arteriovenous oxygen content difference were measured before and after training in 15 male patients with coronary artery disease, who were treated with beta blockers, and in a control group of 14 patients not treated with beta-blocking agents. At the end of a 3-month training period, oxygen uptake at peak exercise increased similarly in the two groups, 37% and 34%, respectively; this was related to increases in stroke volume and heart rate, and therefore cardiac output, and to increases in arteriovenous oxygen content difference. The effects were similar whether or not the patients were treated with beta blockers. Also, at rest and submaximal exercise, beta blockade did not affect the training-induced changes of cardiac output, heart rate, and arteriovenous oxygen content difference. In both groups heart rate decreased with training while stroke volume and cardiac output increased significantly. In conclusion, beta blockade did not significantly alter the hemodynamic effects of training.