In order to determine whether or not regular exercise could alter myocardial perfusion or function, we randomized 146 male volunteers with stable coronary heart disease to either a supervised exercise program (n=72) or to a usual care program (n=74). Subjects underwent exercise tests initially and one year later. Significant differences between the two groups included improved aerobic capacity, thallium ischemia scores, and ventricular function in the exercise intervention group. It was not possible to classify the conditions of patients as to the likelihood of improvement or deterioration. This study demonstrated changes in myocardial perfusion and function in a select group of middle-aged men with coronary heart disease who underwent a medically appropriate exercise program lasting one year, but these changes were relatively modest.
Froelicher V, Jensen D, Genter F, Sullivan M, McKirnan MD, Witztum K, Scharf J, Strong ML, Ashburn W. A Randomized Trial of Exercise Training in Patients With Coronary Heart Disease. JAMA. 1984;252(10):1291-1297. doi:10.1001/jama.1984.03350100021023