Cardiac Rehabilitation: Current Review of the Literature and Its Role in Patients with Heart Failure

  • Nishant P. Shah
  • Ahmed AbuHaniyeh
  • Haitham Ahmed
Heart Failure (W Tang, Section Editor)
Part of the following topical collections:
  1. Topical Collection on Heart Failure


Purpose of review

Cardiovascular (CV) disease remains the leading cause of death in the USA despite major advances in its treatment. With time, cardiac rehabilitation (CR) programs have gathered interest to help increase CV health and improve functional status after a CV event. Patients with heart failure have also been shown to benefit. In this review, we will evaluate the current literature showcasing the benefits of CR, particularly in patients with heart failure, discuss current limitations, and avenues for future investigation.

Recent findings

Studies have shown that CR is beneficial in reducing morbidity, mortality, hospitalizations, activity-related symptoms, and increasing quality of life. Similar findings have also been observed in patients with heart failure who underwent CR in addition to optimal medical management.


The positive effects of CR are well established in patients with coronary disease. Recent literature is also showing a trend to benefit in patients with heart failure, though much of the evidence is limited to patients with systolic dysfunction. Despite recommendations by professional societies, the use of CR remains underutilized. Further investigation is needed to better understand the impact of CR in heart failure. Moreover, strategies to increase CR utilization must be explored.


Heart failure Cardiovascular disease Cardiac rehabilitation 


Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of Interest

Nishant P. Shah, Ahmed AbuHaniyeh, and Haitham Ahmed each declare no potential conflicts of interest.

Human and Animal Rights and Informed Consent

This article does not contain any studies with human or animal subjects performed by any of the authors.

References and Recommended Reading

Papers of particular interest, published recently, have been highlighted as: • Of importance

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Nishant P. Shah
    • 1
    • 2
  • Ahmed AbuHaniyeh
    • 3
  • Haitham Ahmed
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Cardiovascular MedicineHeart and Vascular Institute, Cleveland ClinicClevelandUSA
  2. 2.ClevelandUSA
  3. 3.Department of Internal Medicine, Cleveland ClinicClevelandUSA

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