Effects of exercise programs on cardiovascular responses in individuals with down syndrome: A systematic review and meta-analysis

Saeid Bahiraei, Mahbanou Ghaderi, Esmail Sharifian, Sheida Shourabadi Takabi, Sara Sepehri Far, Guillermo R. Oviedo

Research output: Indexed journal article Reviewpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


The purpose of this study is to conduct a systematic review and meta-analysis of exercise interventions designed to improve cardiovascular responses in individuals with DS. A search for relevant articles was conducted on seven electronic databases: PubMed, PEDro, Google Scholar, Scopus, WOS, MEDLINE, and SPORT Discus. An electronic search was conducted on October 15, 2022, without applying any year constraints. The studies were chosen based on a predetermined set of inclusion and exclusion criteria. The methodology of the study was evaluated using the PEDro scale, and data analyses were conducted using the CMA v3 random effects model. In total, 625 articles were reviewed, and data from 10 randomized controlled trials (RCTs) involving DS were used in this meta-analysis. The results showed that exercise programs were effective in increasing VO2peak (ml. kg -1min−1) (ES: 0.69; 95 % confidence interval [CI], 0.27–1.12; P: 0.001), time to exhaustion (ES: 0.83; CI, 0.31–1.35, P: 0.001), and VEpeak (ES: 0.76; CI, 0.32–1.20; P: 0.001). No changes were found for HRpeak (ES: 0.3; CI, −0.02–0.63, P: 0.07), VO2peak (ml·min−1) (ES: 0.45; CI, −0.01–0.92; P: 0.06), or RER (ES: 0.45; CI, −0.09–0.98, P: 0.10). No adverse effects were reported in any of the studies. In this meta-analysis and comprehensive review, exercise interventions may improve cardiovascular responses in DS; however, the association wasn't consistent across trials. RCTs with precise intervention criteria, large sample sizes, and long-term follow-up are needed in the future to demonstrate the benefits of exercise on cardiovascular responses in people with DS.

Original languageEnglish
Article number102521
JournalPreventive Medicine Reports
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2023


  • Cardio-respiratory Fitness
  • Down syndrome
  • Exercise Training
  • Meta-analysis
  • Systematic review


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