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In acutely admitted geriatric patients offering increased physical activity during hospitalization decreases length of stay and can improve mobility

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Physical inactivity during hospitalization increases the risk of hospital‐associated disability in geriatric patients. This open practice‐based intervention study investigated the effect on changes in mobility and muscle strength when offering a 15‐ to 20‐minutes chair‐based exercise program and aiming at increasing physical activity in acutely hospitalized geriatric patients. In total, 303 patients (85 ± 7 years (mean±SD)) were included. The intervention group (I‐group, n = 152) was admitted in 2015 and the historical control group (C‐group, n = 151) in 2014. Patients were included if they had an expected length of stay of at least 3 days and their physical and cognitive condition allowed for assessment of basic mobility. No between‐group difference was found in changes in mobility and muscle strength during hospital admission. However, length of hospital stay was significantly shorter in the I‐group compared to the C‐group (9.8 ± 4.9 vs 12.2 ± 7.8 days, P = .001). Furthermore, the 50 last included patients improved significantly more in mobility and had a shorter length of stay than the first 50 included (9.1 ± 4.5 days vs 11.0 ± 5.1, P = .030); and those who fully complied with the exercise program improved in mobility in contrast to those who declined to participate. Thus, in geriatric patients physical activity shortens length of stay in hospital and can improve function.
Original languageEnglish
JournalTranslational Sports Medicine
Volume1
Issue number1
Pages (from-to)46-53
Publication statusPublished - 2018

ID: 56429057