A Review of Exercise as Medicine in Cardiovascular Disease: Pathology and Mechanism

Piotr Gronek, Dariusz Wieliński, Piotr Cygański, Andrzej Rynkiewicz, Adam Zając, Adam Maszczyk, Joanna Gronek, Robert Podstawski, Wojciech Czarny, Štefan Balkó, Cain Clark, Roman Celka

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Background: Physical inactivity and resultant lower energy expenditure contribute unequivocally to cardiovascular diseases, such as coronary artery disease and stroke, which are considered major causes of disability and mortality worldwide.

Aim: The aim of the study was to investigate the influence of physical activity (PA) and exercise on different aspects of health – genetics, endothelium function, blood pressure, lipid concentrations, glucose intolerance, thrombosis, and self – satisfaction.

Materials and Methods: In this article, we conducted a narrative review of the influence physical activity and exercise have on the cardiovascular system, risk factors of cardiovascular diseases, searching the online databases; Web of Science, PubMed and Google Scholar, and, subsequently, discuss possible mechanisms of this action.

Discussion: Based on our narrative review of literature, discussed the effects of PA on telomere length, nitric oxide synthesis, thrombosis risk, blood pressure, serum glucose, cholesterol and triglycerides levels, and indicated possible mechanisms by which physical activity may lead to improvement in chronic cardiovascular diseases.

Conclusion: Physical activity is effective for the improvement of exercise tolerance, lipid concentrations, blood pressure, it may also reduce the serum glucose level and risk of thrombosis, thus should be advocated concomitant to, or in some cases instead of, traditional drug-therapy.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages14
JournalAging and Disease
Issue number2
Early online date2 Jul 2019
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 2 Jul 2019


Bibliographical note

© 2019 Gronek P et al. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License,
which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.


  • Physical Activity
  • Longevity
  • Cardiovascular Disease
  • Public health problem
  • Aging

Cite this

Gronek, P., Wieliński, D., Cygański, P., Rynkiewicz, A., Zając, A., Maszczyk, A., ... Celka, R. (2020). A Review of Exercise as Medicine in Cardiovascular Disease: Pathology and Mechanism. Aging and Disease, 11(2). https://doi.org/10.14336/AD.2019.0516