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Open Access Original research

Chest associated to motor physiotherapy improves cardiovascular variables in newborns with respiratory distress syndrome

Luiz Carlos de Abreu13*, Vitor E Valenti23, Adriana G de Oliveira1, Claudio Leone1, Arnaldo AF Siqueira1, Dafne Herreiro1, Rubens Wajnsztejn3, Katia V Manhabusque3, Hugo Macedo Júnior3, Carlos B de Mello Monteiro4, Laís L Fernandes3 and Paulo HN Saldiva2

Author Affiliations

1 Departamento de Saúde Materno-infantil, Universidade de São Paulo, Av. Dr. Arnaldo, 715, São Paulo, SP. 01246-904, Brazil

2 Departamento de Patologia, Faculdade de Medicina, Universidade de São Paulo (USP), Av. Dr. Arnaldo, 455, São Paulo, SP. 01246903, Brazil

3 Laboratório de Escrita Científica. Faculdade de Medicina do ABC, Av. Príncipe de Gales, 821, Santo André, SP. 09060-650, Brazil

4 Escola de Artes, Ciência e Humanidades da Universidade de São Paulo (USP), Rua Arlindo Béttio, 1000, São Paulo, SP. 03828-000, Brazil

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International Archives of Medicine 2011, 4:37  doi:10.1186/1755-7682-4-37

Published: 26 October 2011



We aimed to evaluate the effects of chest and motor physiotherapy treatment on hemodynamic variables in preterm newborns with respiratory distress syndrome.


We evaluated heart rate (HR), respiratory rate (RR), systolic (SAP), mean (MAP) and diastolic arterial pressure (DAP), temperature and oxygen saturation (SO2%) in 44 newborns with respiratory distress syndrome. We compared all variables between before physiotherapy treatment vs. after the last physiotherapy treatment. Newborns were treated during 11 days. Variables were measured 2 minutes before and 5 minutes after each physiotherapy treatment. We applied paired Student t test to compare variables between the two periods.


HR (148.5 ± 8.5 bpm vs. 137.1 ± 6.8 bpm - p < 0.001), SAP (72.3 ± 11.3 mmHg vs. 63.6 ± 6.7 mmHg - p = 0.001) and MAP (57.5 ± 12 mmHg vs. 47.7 ± 5.8 mmHg - p = 0.001) were significantly reduced after 11 days of physiotherapy treatment compared to before the first session. There were no significant changes regarding RR, temperature, DAP and SO2%.


Chest and motor physiotherapy improved cardiovascular parameters in respiratory distress syndrome newborns.