(searched for: doi:10.32474/osmoaj.2020.04.000191)
Pathophysiology, Volume 28, pp 328-338; https://doi.org/10.3390/pathophysiology28030022
Decline in normal physiological pulmonary function has been attributed to premorbid conditions such as prehypertension. Research evidence suggests that physical activity reduces age-related decline in pulmonary function and improves the efficiency of the lungs in prehypertensive patients. However, there is a scarcity of data evidence relating to isometric exercise and pulmonary function. Furthermore, the interrelationship between the intensity and duration of isometric exercise and pulmonary function in these patients is still uncertain. Therefore, this study was undertaken to investigate the effect of isometric handgrip exercise on pulmonary function capacity in adults with prehypertension. To determine the effectiveness of isometric handgrip exercise on pulmonary function capacity in adults with prehypertension. A quasi experiment using a pre- and post-exercise method was carried out in two out-patients hospital settings. The sample comprised 192 sedentary pre-hypertensive subjects, aged between 30–50 years, that were randomly distributed into three groups of 64 participants each. The subjects performed, for 24 consecutive days, an isometric handgrip exercise at 30% Maximum Voluntary Contraction (M.V.C.). At the end of the 24 days, group one (GP1) discontinued, while group two (GP2) continued the exercise protocol for another 24 consecutive days and group three (GP3) continued with the exercise protocol for another 24 consecutive days but at 50% M.V.C. Determinants of lung function (outcomes) were Forced Expiratory Volume in 1 s (FEV1), Forced Vital Capacity (FVC), FEV1/FVC Ratio and Peak Expiratory Flow Rate (PEFR). The study shows that there was no statistically significant difference in the pre- and post-exercise outcomes for FEV1, FVC, FEV1/FVC Ratio and PEFR after 24 days for group 1. In group 2, there was a statistically significant difference in the FVC [(mean = 0.12 ± 0.12), (p = 0.002)], FEV1 [(mean = 0.15 ± 0.17), (p = 0.003)] and PEF [(mean = 0.85 ± 0.35), (p = 0.001)] after 48 days. In group 3, there was a statistically significant difference (p = 0.001) in all the outcomes assessed after 48 days. There was a between groups difference in favour of group 2 compared with group 1 for outcomes of FEV1 [(mean = 0.142 ± 0.68), (p = 0.005)] and PEF [(mean = 0.83 ± 0.19), (p = 0.0031)]. There was statistically significant difference in favour of group 3 compared to group 2, by increasing the exercise intensity from 30% to 50% M.V.C., for outcomes of FVC [mean change = 0.10 ± 0.052), (p = 0.005)], FEV1/FVC [mean change = 3.18 ± 0.75), (p = 0.017)] and PEF [(mean change = 0.86 ± 0.35), (p = 0.001)] after 48 days. Isometric handgrip exercise (after 48 days at 30% to 50% M.V.C.) improves outcomes of pulmonary function capacity in adults with prehypertension. Meanwhile, duration and/or increase in intensity of the isometric effort significantly contributed to the affects attained.