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Home-based rehabilitation improves exercise capacity and reduces respiratory symptoms in people with COPD (PEDro synthesis)
  1. Renae J McNamara1,
  2. Mark R Elkins2,3
  1. 1Physiotherapy Department, Prince of Wales Hospital, South Eastern Sydney Local Health District, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
  2. 2Sydney Medical School, University of Sydney, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
  3. 3Centre for Evidence-Based Physiotherapy, The George Institute for Global Health, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
  1. Correspondence to Professor Mark R Elkins, Centre for Education & Workforce Development, Building 301, Rozelle, NSW, Australia; mark.elkins{at}

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This section features a recent systematic review that is indexed on PEDro, the Physiotherapy Evidence Database ( PEDro is a free, web-based database of evidence relevant to physiotherapy.

▸ Liu XL, Tan JY, Wang T, et al. Effectiveness of home-based pulmonary rehabilitation for patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease: a meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials. Rehabil Nurs 2014;39:36–59.


Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is characterised by chronic dyspnoea, reduced exercise tolerance and reduced quality of life. The reduced exercise tolerance is attributed to abnormal respiratory mechanics, gas exchange disturbances and deconditioning of skeletal muscle.1 Pulmonary rehabilitation involves exercise training, education and psychosocial support. When pulmonary rehabilitation is undertaken by people with COPD in a group format (typically in a hospital gymnasium), it reduces dyspnoea, improves exercise capacity and improves quality of life.2 However, pulmonary rehabilitation is only delivered to a small percentage of people with COPD,3 with transport to the venue being a common barrier to participation.4 Home-based pulmonary rehabilitation may be an effective alternative method of delivery.


This review aimed to synthesise the …

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  • Twitter Follow Renae McNamara at @RenaeMcnamara

  • Contributors MRE selected the systematic review and wrote the first draft of the manuscript. RJM contributed to interpretation of the data and revision of the manuscript. Both the authors are guarantors.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; internally peer reviewed.