Outcomes of a home-based pulmonary maintenance program for individuals with COPD: a pilot study
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This preliminary pilot study explores sustained benefits of pulmonary rehabilitation (PR) in people with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) attending a 12-month home-based pulmonary maintenance program. The incidence of COPD is high and ageing populations will see this continue and possibly increase. PR programs are effective, however, benefits may dissipate if the program is not continued. The maintenance program involved: strength retraining exercises; collaborative goal setting; regular telephone calls; and home visits. Around half of the 29 participants remained in contact with the program for 12 months and 21 completed final or 6-month assessment. Most participants maintained: respiratory functioning; quality of life; and self-efficacy, with some showing improvements. Outcomes provide knowledge for improving patient care through a home-based strategy to maintain benefits of PR programs. Results suggest that in light of likely decline in benefits 6-12 months after PR, the maintenance program contributed to sustained benefits for COPD individuals and also provide information to aid investigators planning the design of similar larger research with this population.
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