Prediction of Discontinuation of Structured Exercise Programme in Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Patients

Sławomir Kujawski (Coresponding Author), Jo Cossington, Joanna Słomko, Helen Dawes, James Wl Strong, Fernando Estevez-Lopez, Modra Murovska, Julia L Newton, Lynette Hodges, Paweł Zalewski

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)


PURPOSE: The purpose of this study was to assess differences in the physiological profiles of completers vs. non-completers following a structured exercise programme (SEP) and the ability to predict non-completers, which is currently unknown in this group.

METHODS: Sixty-nine patients met the Fukuda criteria. Patients completed baseline measures assessing fatigue, autonomic nervous system (ANS), cognitive, and cardiovascular function. Thirty-four patients completed a home-based SEP consisting of 10-40 min per day at between 30 and 80% actual HR max. Exercise intensity and time was increased gradually across the 16 weeks and baseline measures were repeated following the SEP.

RESULTS: Thirty-five patients discontinued, while 34 completed SEP. For every increase in sympathetic drive for blood pressure control as measured by the taskforce, completion of SEP decreased by a multiple of 0.1. For a 1 millisecond increase in reaction time for the simple reaction time (SRT), the probability for completion of SEP also decreases by a multiple of 0.01. For a one beat HRmax increase, there is a 4% increase in the odds of completing SEP.

CONCLUSION: The more sympathetic drive in the control of blood vessels, the longer the reaction time on simple visual stimuli and the lower the HRmax during physical exercise, then the lower the chance of SEP completion in ME/CFS.

Original languageEnglish
Article number3436
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Clinical Medicine
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - 26 Oct 2020

Field of Science*

  • 3.2 Clinical medicine

Publication Type*

  • 1.1. Scientific article indexed in Web of Science and/or Scopus database


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