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The association between objectively measured physical activity and morning symptoms in COPD

Authors van Buul AR, Kasteleyn MJ, Chavannes NH, Taube C

Received 6 June 2017

Accepted for publication 14 August 2017

Published 3 October 2017 Volume 2017:12 Pages 2831—2840


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 3

Editor who approved publication: Dr Richard Russell

Amanda R van Buul,1 Marise J Kasteleyn,1,2 Niels H Chavannes,2 Christian Taube1,3

1Department of Pulmonology, 2Department of Public Health and Primary Care, Leiden University Medical Center, Leiden, the Netherlands; 3Department of Pulmonary Medicine, West German Lung Center, Essen University Hospital, Ruhrlandklinik, University Duisburg-Essen, Essen, Germany

Purpose: The morning is the most bothersome period for COPD patients. Morning symptom severities in different Global Initiative for Chronic Obstructive Lung Disease (GOLD) stages are not well studied. Furthermore, factors that are associated with morning symptoms, especially the associations with objectively measured physical activity, are also not well described.
Materials and methods: The aim of this cross-sectional observational study was to assess morning symptom severity in GOLD A, B, C and D patients, according to the definitions of the GOLD 2015 statement. Morning symptoms were assessed with the PRO-Morning COPD Symptoms Questionnaire. Differences in morning symptom severity between different COPD stages were assessed with a one-way analysis of variance followed by post hoc analyses. The association between dyspnea severity (assessed with the modified Medical Research Council scale), health status, airflow limitation, lung hyperinflation, anxiety and depression, inflammatory parameters, exacerbations, objectively measured physical activity parameters retrieved from accelerometry and morning symptom severity was evaluated using linear regression analysis.
Results: Eighty patients were included (aged 65.6±8.7 years, forced expiratory volume in 1 second [FEV1] % predicted 55.1±16.9). Mean (±SD) morning symptom score was 19.7 (±11.7). Morning symptom severity was significantly different between COPD stages: mean (±SD) score in GOLD A was 9.7 (±7.2), in GOLD B 19.8 (±10.7), in GOLD C 8.6 (±9.3) and in GOLD D 23.8 (±11.2) (p<0.001). Lower health status, more symptoms, increased anxiety and depression, less physical activity (all p<0.001) and lower FEV1 (p=0.03) were associated with an increased morning symptom severity.
Conclusion: Patients with overall more symptomatic COPD have significant higher morning symptom scores. Morning symptom severity was associated with important clinical outcomes: lower health status, more symptoms, increased anxiety and depression, fewer steps a day, less time in moderate and vigorous physical activity with bouts of at least 10 minutes and lower FEV1. The data suggest that morning symptoms should be carefully assessed in addition to assessment by general COPD-specific questionnaires, especially in those with more symptomatic COPD. More research is needed on potential therapies to improve morning symptoms; this study shows potential targets for intervention.

Keywords: accelerometry, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, physical activity, PRO-Morning COPD Symptoms Questionnaire, morning symptoms

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