Nine studies were included in the review (521 participants; range 18 to 149) comprising five RCTs (382 patients) and four non-controlled trials (139 patients). Only RCT fulfilled all of the Delphi quality criteria. Randomisation was adequate in all the RCTs. Allocation concealment was adequate in two trials and was not reported in three trials. Blinding was considered adequate in two trials and was not reported in three trials. Intention-to-treat analysis was used in only one trial. Further results were presented in the paper.
Functional capacity (assessed by the six-minute walking test) was improved following exercise training in two studies in Swedish patients. Ventilation threshold was improved following 24-weeks exercise training in one study of Swedish patients, but no effect was observed in another study of Arabian patients.
Resistance training alone (one study) and resistance training in combination with aerobic training (one study) resulted in improved measures of muscular strength. Adverse events for exercise participation (reported in four studies) included hypoglycaemic events, chest pain, and uncomplicated syncope. Two studies attributed no adverse events to the exercise participation; five trials did not report data on adverse events.
Exercise training was associated with improvements in the following outcomes in most studies: glycated haemoglobin, insulin action, body composition, blood lipids, and systolic and diastolic blood pressure (further details were reported in the paper). A longer duration and greater frequency of training was associated with greater adaptation in general. Findings from two studies suggested differences in training effects between African and Arabian participants.