Stress management post acute coronary syndrome – efficiency of a multimodular stress management program

Research institution: Gehirn- und Traumastiftung Graubünden/Kantonsspital Chur

Researchers: Dr. Andreas Müller

Training program used in research: Cogmed RM

Status: Ongoing

In Switzerland, after acute coronary events, patients usually undergo a 9 – 12 week outpatient cardiac rehabilitation program (CR). Cardiac rehabilitation aims to improve physical fitness and to reduce psychological distress, besides other somatic risk factors. Studies have shown that CR is effective in reducing psychological distress. Standardized stress management programs are not very well established in this context.

Researcher hypothesize that a majority of patients will benefit in regards to working memory and power of concentration after engaging in a multimodal structured stress management program that includes Cogmed. Also, most patients will show improved stress processing strategies. These effects might be provable after 12 months and good physical fitness will have an additive effect. One hundred patients following acute coronary events who undergo a 9-week outpatient CR program will be randomized in group A and group B. In Group A the multimodal stress program will be tested. Group B patients will receive usual psychological care. All patients will be tested at enrollment, and after 10 and 53 weeks. A control group of healthy individuals is tested and observed in the same manner. All participants will be measured with clinical cardiologic assessment, ergospirometry, blood analyses, standardized questionnaires to assess stress processing strategies, and quantitative EEG.