Skip to main content

Research Repository

See what's under the surface

Changes in physical activity during hospital admission for chronic respiratory disease: Inpatient step count does not recover

Orme, Mark W.; Harvey-Dunstan, Theresa C.; Boral, Ismet; Chaplin, Emma J.L.; Hussain, S. Fayyaz; Morgan, Mike D.L.; Steiner, Michael C.; Singh, Sally J.; Greening, Neil J.


Mark W. Orme

Theresa C. Harvey-Dunstan

Ismet Boral

Emma J.L. Chaplin

S. Fayyaz Hussain

Mike D.L. Morgan

Michael C. Steiner

Sally J. Singh

Neil J. Greening


Background and objective

Establishing the amount of inpatient physical activity (PA) undertaken by individuals hospitalized for chronic respiratory disease is needed to inform interventions. This observational study investigated whether PA changes when a person is an inpatient, how long is required to obtain representative PA measures and whether PA varies within a day and between patients of differing lengths of stay.


A total of 389 participants were recruited as early as possible into their hospitalization. Patients wore a PA monitor from recruitment until discharge. Step count was extracted for a range of wear time criteria. Single‐day intraclass correlation coefficients (ICC) were calculated, with an ICC ≥ 0.80 deemed acceptable.


PA data were available for 259 participants. No changes in daily step count were observed during the inpatient stay (586 (95% CI: 427–744) vs 652 (95% CI: 493–812) steps/day for day 2 and 7, respectively). ICC across all wear time criteria were > 0.80. The most stringent wear time criterion, retaining 80% of the sample, was ≥11 h on ≥1 day. More steps were taken during the morning and afternoon than overnight and evening. After controlling for the Medical Research Council (MRC) grade or oxygen use, there was no difference in step count between patients admitted for 2–3 days (short stay) and those admitted for 7–14 days (long stay).


Patients move little during their hospitalization, and inpatient PA did not increase during their stay. A wear time criterion of 11 waking hours on any single day was representative of the entire admission whilst retaining an acceptable proportion of the initial sample size. Patients may need encouragement to move more during their hospital stay.

Journal Article Type Article
Publication Date 2019-07
Journal Respirology
Print ISSN 1323-7799
Publisher Wiley
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 24
Issue 7
Pages 652-657
APA6 Citation Orme, M. W., Harvey-Dunstan, T. C., Boral, I., Chaplin, E. J., Hussain, S. F., Morgan, M. D., …Greening, N. J. (2019). Changes in physical activity during hospital admission for chronic respiratory disease: Inpatient step count does not recover. Respirology, 24(7), 652-657. doi:10.1111/resp.13513
Keywords Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
Publisher URL
Additional Information This is the peer reviewed version of the following article: [Orme, MW, Harvey‐Dunstan, TC, Boral, I, et al. Changes in physical activity during hospital admission for chronic respiratory disease. Respirology. 2019; 1– 6, which has been published in final form at This article may be used for non-commercial purposes in accordance with Wiley Terms and Conditions for Use of Self-Archived Versions.


This file is under embargo until Mar 7, 2020 due to copyright restrictions.

Downloadable Citations