UBC Faculty Research and Publications

Efficacy of a Physical Activity Counselling Program with Use of Wearable Tracker in People with Inflammatory Arthritis : A Randomized Controlled Trial Li, Linda C.; Feehan, Lynne; Xie, Hui; Lu, Na; Shaw, Chris; Gromala, Diane; Aviña-Zubieta, Antonio J.; Koehn, Cheryl; Hoens, Alison; English, Kelly; Tam, Johnathan; Therrien, Stephanie; Townsend, Anne F.; Noonan, Greg; Backman, Catherine


Objectives. To assess the efficacy of a multi-faceted counselling intervention at improving physical activity participation and patient outcomes. Methods. We recruited people with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) or systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE). In Weeks 1-8, the Immediate Group received education and counselling by a physiotherapist (PT), used a Fitbit and a web-application to obtain feedback about their physical activity, and received 4 follow-up calls from the PT. The Delay Group received the same intervention in Weeks 10-17. Participants were assessed at baseline, Week 9, 18 and 27. Primary outcome was time spent in moderate/vigorous physical activity (MVPA; in bouts of >10 mins) measured with a SenseWear. Secondary outcomes included step count, time in sedentary behaviour, pain, fatigue, mood, self management capacity, and habitual behaviours. Results. 118 participants enrolled. The adjusted mean difference in MVPA was 9.4 mins/day (95% CI: -0.5, 19.3, P=0.06). A significant effect was found in pain (-2.45; 95% CI: -4.78, -0.13, P=0.04), and perceived walking habit (0.54; 95% CI: 0.08, 0.99, P=0.02). The remaining secondary outcomes improved, but were not statistically significant. Post-hoc analysis revealed a significant effect in MVPA (14.3 mins/day; 95% CI: 2.3, 26.3) and pain (-4.05; 95% CI: -6.73, -1.36) in participants with RA, but not those with SLE. Conclusion. Counselling by a PT has potential to improve physical activity in people with inflammatory arthritis, but further study is needed to understand the intervention effect on different diseases. We found a significant improvement in pain, suggesting the intervention might have a positive effect on symptom management.

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