Inflammatory Bowel Disease Impacts Exercise Capacity

Lower fitness values seen in pediatric patients with Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis

FRIDAY, April 1 (HealthDay News) -- Pediatric patients with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) exhibit impaired exercise capacity compared to reference values, according to a study published online Dec. 13 in The Journal of Pediatrics.

Hilde E. Ploeger, from the University of Groningen in the Netherlands, and colleagues examined the exercise capacity of pediatric patients with Crohn's disease (CD) and ulcerative colitis (UC). Nineteen participants with CD and 10 with UC performed standard exercise tests to assess the following fitness variables: peak power (PP), mean power (MP), peak aerobic mechanical power (Wpeak), and peak oxygen uptake (VO2peak). These variables were correlated with clinical outcomes and compared to reference data.

The investigators found that, compared to reference values, pediatric patients with IBD had lower PP, MP, Wpeak, and VO2peak. In separate analyses of patients with CD or UC, only the CD group showed significantly lower Wpeak compared to the reference values. Using a pediatric activity index for CD or UC, no exercise variable was found to have statistically significant correlations with disease duration or disease activity. Recent hemoglobin levels, controlled for chronological age, were significantly correlated with PP (P = 0.049), MP (P = 0.003), VO2peak (P = 0.004), and Wpeak (P = 0.001).

"Pediatric patients with IBD exhibited impaired aerobic and anaerobic exercise capacity even when in remission from their disease," the authors write.

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