P247 ‘Adult bronchiectasis patients’ perceptions of exercise: a qualitative study’

Holly Evans , Carol Ann Kelly

Research output: Contribution to conferencePosterpeer-review


Introduction Bronchiectasis is a chronic respiratory condition characterised by abnormally dilated airways leading to increases in, and pooling of, respiratory secretions. Approximately 5 in every 1,000 adults in the United Kingdom have bronchiectasis. Exercise reduces dyspnoea, increases exercise tolerance and improves quality of life in patients with chronic respiratory disease and is an effective method of secretion clearance.
Patients with bronchiectasis have reduced exercises tolerance and are less active than the general population. Many do not participate in pulmonary rehabilitation but the reasons for this are unclear. No evidence currently exists regarding the attitudes of bronchiectasis patients towards exercise, and barriers to compliance. In order to introduce effective measures to increase adherence to exercise, reasons for poor adherence and potential barriers need to be identified.
Aim To explore the views of adult bronchiectasis patients towards exercise.
Method A qualitative study was carried out, consisting of semi-structured interviews with ten adult patients with bronchiectasis at a single site in the north west of England. Perceptions of exercise, potential barriers to exercise and potential facilitators of exercise were explored. Thematic analysis was used to code the data and identify themes.
Findings Five main themes were identified following the analysis:
  Facilitators to exercise e.g. enjoyment, pacing and adaptation, self–motivation.
  Barriers to exercise e.g. embarrassment regarding symptoms, breathlessness,   fear of exacerbating symptoms.
  Exercise has a positive impact on health and life expectancy
  Grief regarding loss of ability
  Definitions of exercise
Conclusion These findings suggest that there are a number of shared facilitators and barriers to exercise between bronchiectasis patients. Participants recognised that exercise was positive, but had differing perceptions on what ‘exercise’ actually entailed. Future research needs to further explore potential barriers and facilitators to exercise in this patient group on a larger scale. This could then lead to the use of behaviour change models to aid participation in exercise. These findings indicate that healthcare professionals should consider bronchiectasis patients holistically in order to aid compliance with exercise. Healthcare professionals need to reflect on their role in exercise advice and prescription, and the language used when doing so.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages2
Publication statusPublished - 12 Nov 2019

Research Centres

  • Cardio-Respiratory Research Centre


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