Effects of a pulmonary rehabilitation program on exercise capacity in people with COPD

Grant recipient: Joshua Bishop, APAM

Project title: Effect of a pulmonary rehabilitation program of 8 weeks duration compared to 12 weeks on exercise capacity in people with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (PuRe Duration): A randomised controlled trial.

Year awarded: 2017

PRF grant: Seeding grant

Snapshot: Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease affects around 1.5 million Australians and costs billions in health expenditure, mainly due to hospital admissions. This study aims to find the optimal duration of a pulmonary rehabilitation program to better inform clinicians and policy makers.  

The findings: This pilot study is currently underway and will look to determine if there is a difference between an eight week pulmonary rehabilitation program and a 12-week program in outcomes of exercise capacity and quality of life in the short term, and in those same outcomes plus hospital admissions in the longer term (12 months after completing the program).

Benefits for the profession: By collecting data on exercise capacity, quality of life and hospital admissions, this research will be able to determine whether it is worthwhile recommending a change in the duration of pulmonary rehabilitation programs in Australia to provide best patient outcomes. 

The next steps: Joshua is hoping to fully recruit for his study by the end of 2018, collect short-term data by mid-2019 and complete six and 12 month follow ups by the end of 2020.