Predictors of Rehabilitation Referral Among Cardiovascular Surgical Patients

Laura Gómez González, Marta Supervia, José R. Medina-Inojosa, Joshua R. Smith, M. Esther López Blanco, M. Teresa Miranda Vivas, Francisco López-Jiménez, M. Olga Arroyo-Riaño

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objective: Cardiovascular disease (CVD) continues to be the leading cause of mortality globally. Cardiac rehabilitation (CR) programs act by modifying the evolution of CVD and mortality; however, CR programs are under-used. The aim was to determine the profile of patients that received rehabilitation after cardiac surgery. Patients and Methods: A retrospective observational study was conducted from January 2017 to December 2017 at a single center. The study sample was chosen among patients admitted to the Intensive Care Unit of the Hospital Gregorio Marañón/Gregorio Marañón General University Hospital. Socio-demographic and clinical variables were collected. Results: In the present study, 336 patients underwent cardiac surgery of which 63.8% were men and 87.1% had ≥1 cardiovascular risk factors. Of the total cohort, 24.7% were operated for ischemic heart disease, 47.9% valvulopathy, 11% underwent combined surgery, 3.6% cardiac transplantation, 6.5% aneurysms, and 3.9% congenital disease. In-hospital respiratory rehabilitation was prescribed to all patients. Only 4.8% of the patients received motor rehabilitation and 13.8% were referred to CR. We found higher referral rates among patients with more cardiovascular risk factors, <65 years of age, and those undergoing coronary surgery and heart transplantation. Age, ischemic heart disease, and overweight were independent predictors of CR referral. Conclusion: The benefit of CR programs after cardiac surgery is widely described; however, the referral rate to CR remains low. It is crucial to optimize referral protocols for these patients.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number848610
JournalFrontiers in Cardiovascular Medicine
StatePublished - May 3 2022


  • cardiac surgical procedures
  • cardiovascular disease
  • cardiovascular rehabilitation
  • referral and consultation
  • secondary prevention

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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