The effect of community-based interventions for cardiovascular disease secondary prevention on behavioural risk factors

Emma R. Lawlor, Declan T. Bradley, Margaret E. Cupples, Mark A. Tully

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Citations (Scopus)


Cardiovascular disease (CVD) is the leading cause of death worldwide, and its prevalence is increasing; with limited healthcare resources, secondary prevention programmes outside traditional hospital settings are needed, but their effectiveness is unclear. We aimed to assess the effectiveness of secondary prevention cardiovascular risk reduction programmes delivered in venues situated within the community on modification of behavioural risk factors. We searched five databases (MEDLINE, EMBASE, CINAHL, PsycINFO, Cochrane library) to identify trials of health behaviour interventions for adults with CVD in community-based venues. Primary outcomes were changes in physical activity, diet, smoking and/or alcohol consumption. Two reviewers independently assessed articles for eligibility and risk of bias; statistical analysis used Revman v5.3. Of 5905 articles identified, 41 articles (38 studies) (n = 7970) were included. Interventions were mainly multifactorial, educational, psychological and physical activity-based. Meta-analyses identified increased steps/week (Mean Difference (MD): 7480; 95% CI 1,940, 13,020) and minutes of physical activity/week (MD: 59.96; 95% CI 15.67, 104.25) associated with interventions. There was some evidence for beneficial effects on peak VO2, blood pressure, total cholesterol and mental health. Variation in outcome measurements reported for other behavioural risk factors limited our ability to perform meta-analyses. Effective interventions were based in homes, general practices or outpatient settings, individually tailored and often multicomponent with a theoretical framework. Our review identified evidence that interventions for secondary CVD prevention, delivered in various community-based venues, have positive effects on physical activity; such opportunities should be promoted by health professionals.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)24-38
Number of pages15
JournalPreventive Medicine
Early online date24 May 2018
Publication statusPublished (in print/issue) - 30 Sept 2018


  • Cardiovascular diseases
  • Secondary prevention
  • Behavioural medicine
  • risk reduction behaviour
  • Review


Dive into the research topics of 'The effect of community-based interventions for cardiovascular disease secondary prevention on behavioural risk factors'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this