Cardiac Rehabilitation Programs: Content, Effectiveness, Limitations, and Gaps in Knowledge

Eleftheria C. Economidou, Barbara Lianopoulou, Soteris Soteriades, Elpidoforos S. Soteriades

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Cardiac rehabilitation (CR) constitutes a valuable therapeutic approach for patients with a broad spectrum of cardiovascular diseases facilitating the development and maintenance of a desirable level of physical, social, and psychological functioning following the onset of cardiovascular disease. Nowadays, cardiac rehabilitation programs emphasize the use of a multidisciplinary approach. The current review aims at presenting the state-of-the-art knowledge on the indications of patients entering cardiac rehabilitation programs, including their core components, duration, and effectiveness. Following a careful review of the international literature, we conclude that there are significant differences between the most commonly cited international CR guidelines as well as additional limitations and gaps in knowledge. Despite the benefits associated with CR and despite their widespread acceptance, CR referrals and program attendance remains low, while many questions have not been so far addressed through scientific research. Overall, the findings of our study suggest a critical need for the development of robust and evidence-based standardized CR interventions to increase their use and effectiveness throughout the world.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)157-161
Number of pages5
JournalCardiology in Review
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Mar 1 2024


  • cardiac patients
  • cardiac rehabilitation
  • cardiac rehabilitation programs
  • cardiovascular disease

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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