Safety, feasibility and effectiveness of the remotely delivered Pulmonary Hypertension and Home-Based (PHAHB) physical activity intervention


Background: Pulmonary hypertension (PH) is a heterogeneous condition, associated with a high symptom burden and a substantial loss of exercise capacity. Despite prior safety concerns regarding physical exertion, exercise training as a supportive therapy is now recommended for PH patients. Currently, most programs are hospital-based, which limits accessibility. There is a need to provide alternative approaches for physical activity engagement for PH patients. The aim of this research was to develop, implement and evaluate the safety, feasibility, and effectiveness of home-based physical activity intervention for PH.

Methods: An entirely remotely delivered home-based exercise intervention underpinned by behaviour change theory and informed by end-users, was assessed using a single-arm feasibility study design. Participants (n=19; 80% female) with a mean (±sd) age of 49.9±15.9 y with a diagnosis of PH undertook a 10-week, home-based exercise intervention with induction training, support materials, telecommunication support, health coaching, exercise training, and assessments, all remotely delivered. Training involved respiratory training along with a combination of aerobic and resistance exercises.

Results: The intervention was deemed safe as no adverse events were reported. A high level of feasibility was demonstrated as the protocol was implemented as intended, sustained a high level of engagement and adherence and was well accepted by participants in terms of enjoyment and utility. There was a significant improvement in functional capacity, physical activity, exercise self-efficacy and quality of life (QoL), between baseline and post-training.

Conclusion: The study demonstrates that an entirely remotely delivered home-based exercise program is safe, feasible and effective in improving functional capacity, physical activity, and QoL in PH patients

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