The effects of reducing the frequency of long-term physiotherapy on patiÃ«nts with severe COPD: a Dutch multicenter study
The Physical Therapy & Science Association (F&W) performed a study on the consequences of reducing the frequency of longterm physiotherapeutic rehabilitation in patients with COPD.
ABSTRACT Purpose: To investigate if a reduction in the frequency of long term physiotherapy leads to an increase in exacerbations, prescriptions of medication and hospital admissions leads to an increase ofexacerbations, prescriptions of medication and hospital admissions in patients with chronic obstructivepulmonary disease (COPD). Intervention: 296 adults with severe COPD (GOLD III & IV) followed a weekly physiotherapy program with a focus on endurance capacity, muscle function and education. In this study, participants were divided into two groups: a High-Frequency Group (HFG) and a Low Frequency Group (LFG). Results: The HFG had consistent lower rates of exacerbations (LFG xÌ„ 4.14; HFG xÌ„ 2.71), prescriptions antibiotics LFG xÌ„ 28.63; HFG xÌ„ 12.64), number of hospital admissions (LFG xÌ„ 1.22; HFG xÌ„ 0.36) and days in hospital (LFG xÌ„ 8.85; HFG xÌ„ 1.36) compared to LFG. Differences between both groups (Independent samples T-test, p < 0.05) were significant for exacerbations (p = 0.001), antibiotic prescriptions (p = 0.009), hospital admissions (p = 0.000) and days in hospital (p = 0.000). Conclusion: Reducing the frequency of long-term physiotherapy leads to significantly higher rates of exacerbations, medication use, hospital admissions and days in hospital in patients with severe COPD.