The Science Journal of the American Association for Respiratory Care

2011 OPEN FORUM Abstracts


Sheila V. Kamath, Norma Newell, Pamela Robertson, Moronica Carter; Pulmonary rehabilitation, University Hospital, Augusta, GA

Background: A study was conducted to assess the Ratings of Perceived Exertion (RPE) using the BORG Dyspnea Index (BDI) with selected goal Activities of Daily Living (ADLs) among patients enrolled in pulmonary rehabilitation (PR). Objective: To measure pre and post outcomes with the RPE associated with ADLs for patients enrolled in PR. A tool created for an earlier pilot study of 18 patients was used to provide a visual "ladder" depicting the BDI, providing both a visual and numerical means of communicating degree of dyspnea. Method: 154 patients joining the PR program from December 2009 to December 2010 were asked to select up to 5 goal ADLs from a list of 25. For each of the activities selected, they were asked to identify the degree of dyspnea experienced using the visual "ladder". These ratings were noted along with their personal goals for rehabilitation. The patients were reassessed for their RPE for the same activities after completion of the program. The rehabilitation session included aerobic exercise, strength training as well as education meeting three days a week for six weeks. The mean scores were calculated pre and post-rehabilitation and compared to scores of the SF-36(a quality of life questionnaire), education test as well as the 6-min walk. Of the patients, 59% had a diagnosis of COPD, 43% were males and the mean age was 67 years. Results: The tool proved to be very effective in a larger group as it did in the pilot study. There were statistically significant RPE changes between pre- and post- scores (mean =5.11 vs. 3.67, p < .013). The mean percentage of decrease in dyspnea was 28%. There were no statistically significant differences by gender. All pre and post scores showed statistical differences. There was a significant decrease in RPE post-rehabilitation by 39% in 28 patients that walked < 800 feet pre-rehabilitation. Conclusion: We plan to continue to use this easy tool which provided relevant change and good feedback to patients post rehabilitation. The results showed significant gains made by those patients that were limited in their ADLs as assessed by the 6 minute walk distance. Sponsored Research - None