Background and Objective: Limited evidence on long-term effects of physical activity programs in COPD is available. The aim of the study was to investigate the effects of a three-month program combining physical activity counselling and pedometer-based feedback in addition to usual care, followed by a nine-month unsupervised observation period as compared to usual care in participants with severe to very severe COPD.
Methods: Participants were randomized to either a control group receiving usual care or an intervention group receiving motivational support, an activity diary with an individual step count goal (ie, an increase of ≥ 15% from baseline) and a pedometer in addition to usual care. The intervention ended after three months and an unsupervised observational period followed until twelve months. Primary outcome was daily step count after one year.
Results: Seventy-four participants were included, 61 (82%) completed the study. Linear regression modelling, adjusted for baseline step count, showed no significant difference in change in step count after 12 months between the groups (&Bgr; = 547.33, 95% CI = − 243.55/1338.20).
Conclusion: A three-month program combining physical activity counselling and pedometer-based feedback in addition to usual care does not attenuate the declining course of physical activity in participants with severe and very severe COPD during a long term follow-up of one year as compared to usual care. This result was primarily determined by the low intervention response rates to the combined program.