Systematic review found that exercise training alone or with activity counselling improves physical activity levels in COPD

In this recent review, the authors included 37 randomised controlled trials (n= 4,314 participants) that evaluated the efficacy of interventions to improve physical activity levels in people diagnosed with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Primary outcome was physical activity levels and secondary outcomes included exercise capacity, quality of life, dyspnea and lung function. The quality of included studies, according to the PEDro scale, ranged from 3 to 10 points (median [interquartile range] 6 [5 to 7]), where failing to conceal allocation and lack of blinding were the most common methodological limitations in the included studies. Exercise training significantly increased physical activity levels in COPD compared to standard care (standardised mean difference [95% CI] 0.84 [0.44 to 1.25], 3 studies, 103 participants). The addition of activity counselling to pulmonary rehabilitation also increased physical activity levels compared to pulmonary rehabilitation alone (0.47 [0.02 to 0.92], 4 studies, 140 participants). To conclude, exercise training and physical activity counselling were effective strategies to increase physical activity in people with COPD.

Lahham A et al. Exercise training alone or with the addition of activity counseling improves physical activity levels in COPD: a systematic review and meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials. Int J Chron Obstruct Pulmon Dis 2016;11:3121-36

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