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Correlation between Length of Hospital Stay and Gait Speed in Patients Submitted to Cardiac Surgery

Abstract

Background:

Cardiovascular diseases have been increasing worldwide in recent decades due to the increased occurrence of triggering factors. In the postoperative period of cardiovascular surgery, patients experience a functional decline, which may be potentiated by the length of hospital stay. Therefore, it is important to evaluate these patients' functional capacity.

Objective:

To compare the length of hospital stay with the gait speed in patients undergoing cardiac surgery.

Method:

Prospective, cohort study carried out at the Instituto Nobre de Cardiologia (Incardio) at Santa Casa de Misericórdia (Feira de Santana, Bahia). Upon discharge, all patients were evaluated with the 6-minute walk test (6MWT). The length of hospital stay in the postoperative period was also recorded at the same time and correlate with the gait speed. We used the Kolmogorov-Smirnov test to evaluate the assumption of normality, and Spearman's correlation to correlate the gait velocity with age, length of hospital stay, and duration of cardiopulmonary bypass (CPB) and invasive mechanical ventilation (IMV). All conclusions were based on a significance level of 5%.

Results:

In all, 64 patients were included (33 males [51.5%], mean age 57.2 ± 14.06 years). The mean distance walked by the patients was 375.8 ± 197.6 meters, the mean gait speed was 0.98 ± 0.53 m/s, and the mean hospital stay was 8.2 ± 2.3 days. A weak correlation was observed between the length of hospital stay and gait speed (r = 0.27 and p = 0.02).

Conclusion:

The length of hospital stay correlated weakly with the gait speed upon hospital discharge in a sample of patients undergoing cardiac surgery.

Trial registration:

Registered at CAAE (41151214.5.0000.5654) on June 26, 2015.

Keywords:
Cardiovascular Diseases / surgery; Thoracic Surgery; Hospitalization; Walking; Physiotherapy; Velocity Measurement

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E-mail: revistaijcs@cardiol.br