Physiotherapy - Research Publications

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    The sit-to-stand test as a patient-centered functional outcome for critical care research: a pooled analysis of five international rehabilitation studies
    O'Grady, HK ; Edbrooke, L ; Farley, C ; Berney, S ; Denehy, L ; Puthucheary, Z ; Kho, ME (BMC, 2022-06-13)
    BACKGROUND: With ICU mortality rates decreasing, it is increasingly important to identify interventions to minimize functional impairments and improve outcomes for survivors. Simultaneously, we must identify robust patient-centered functional outcomes for our trials. Our objective was to investigate the clinimetric properties of a progression of three outcome measures, from strength to function. METHODS: Adults (≥ 18 years) enrolled in five international ICU rehabilitation studies. Participants required ICU admission were mechanically ventilated and previously independent. Outcomes included two components of the Physical Function in ICU Test-scored (PFIT-s): knee extensor strength and assistance required to move from sit to stand (STS); the 30-s STS (30 s STS) test was the third outcome. We analyzed survivors at ICU and hospital discharge. We report participant demographics, baseline characteristics, and outcome data using descriptive statistics. Floor effects represented ≥ 15% of participants with minimum score and ceiling effects ≥ 15% with maximum score. We calculated the overall group difference score (hospital discharge score minus ICU discharge) for participants with paired assessments. RESULTS: Of 451 participants, most were male (n = 278, 61.6%) with a median age between 60 and 66 years, a mean APACHE II score between 19 and 24, a median duration of mechanical ventilation between 4 and 8 days, ICU length of stay (LOS) between 7 and 11 days, and hospital LOS between 22 and 31 days. For knee extension, we observed a ceiling effect in 48.5% (160/330) of participants at ICU discharge and in 74.7% (115/154) at hospital discharge; the median [1st, 3rd quartile] PFIT-s difference score (n = 139) was 0 [0,1] (p < 0.05). For STS assistance, we observed a ceiling effect in 45.9% (150/327) at ICU discharge and in 77.5% (79/102) at hospital discharge; the median PFIT-s difference score (n = 87) was 1 [0, 2] (p < 0.05). For 30 s STS, we observed a floor effect in 15.0% (12/80) at ICU discharge but did not observe a floor or ceiling effect at hospital discharge. The median 30 s STS difference score (n = 54) was 3 [1, 6] (p < 0.05). CONCLUSION: Among three progressive outcome measures evaluated in this study, the 30 s STS test appears to have the most favorable clinimetric properties to assess function at ICU and hospital discharge in moderate to severely ill participants.
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    Patient and clinician perspectives of pelvic floor dysfunction after gynaecological cancer
    Brennen, R ; Lin, K-Y ; Denehy, L ; Soh, S-E ; Frawley, H (ELSEVIER SCIENCE INC, 2022-06-01)
    Purpose: To explore and compare patient and clinician experiences, knowledge and preferences in relation to screening and management of pelvic floor (PF) dysfunction in the gynaecology-oncology setting. Methods: Semi-structured interviews were conducted with women reporting PF symptoms after gynaecological cancer treatment, and gynaecology-oncology clinicians. Interviews were transcribed and thematically analysed and were conducted until data saturation was reached. Results: We interviewed 12 patients and 13 clinicians. We identified two main themes: (1) Experience with PF symptoms, screening, disclosure and management and (2) Future hope of what should happen to screen and manage PF symptoms. Differences between what participants had experienced and what they felt should happen highlighted a perceived need for improving PF screening and management. A sub-theme that reflected relevant barriers and enablers was also identified. Barriers included time pressure, being focussed on cancer treatment and not side-effects, and patients feeling unwell, emotional, and overwhelmed with the logistics of oncology appointments. Enablers included the patient-clinician relationship, and opportunities for improving management included integrating nursing and PF physiotherapy with oncology appointments. Conclusions: Gynaecological cancer survivors and clinicians perceive a need to improve screening and management for PF symptoms. While barriers and differences in perception exist, there are opportunities to improve how PF symptoms can be screened and managed in this population. Further studies exploring the feasibility of providing integrated multidisciplinary PF therapy services may be warranted.
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    Exercise in allogeneic bone marrow transplantation: a qualitative representation of the patient perspective
    Abo, S ; Parry, SM ; Ritchie, D ; Sgro, G ; Truong, D ; Denehy, L ; Granger, CL (SPRINGER, 2022-03-16)
    PURPOSE: Exercise is emerging as a vital aspect of care to alleviate the physical and psychosocial symptom burden associated with allogeneic bone marrow transplantation (BMT). Understanding the patient perspective regarding exercise is important to move towards implementation. This study aimed to characterise experiences and views regarding participation in an exercise program in adults receiving treatment for haematological disease with allogeneic BMT. METHODS: Individual semi-structured interviews were conducted with 35 participants from either an early- or late-commencing supervised group-based exercise program. Using an inductive, conventional approach to qualitative content analysis data were independently analysed by two researchers. RESULTS: Six major themes and 33 sub-themes were identified: this encompassed motivation, physical opportunity and capability to exercise; psychosocial effects of group-based exercise; experienced impact of participation in an exercise program; and intervention design considerations. Key barriers to exercise included symptom severity and fluctuating health and distance or difficult access to an exercise facility or equipment, whilst facilitators included encouragement from staff; peer support in the group-based setting; flexibility; education; and ability to measure change. CONCLUSION: This study highlights the importance of a flexible approach to exercise with consideration of individual symptoms and preferences. The perceived psychological impact of exercise should not be underestimated; future exercise programs should be designed in partnership with patients, with consideration of group-based activities to reduce social isolation if this is feasible in the treatment context. Intervention design should also acknowledge the individual's physical and psychological capability, opportunity and automatic and reflective motivation to direct and sustain exercise behaviours following BMT.
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    Improving physical function of patients following intensive care unit admission (EMPRESS): protocol of a randomised controlled feasibility trial
    Cusack, R ; Bates, A ; Mitchell, K ; van Willigen, Z ; Denehy, L ; Hart, N ; Dushianthan, A ; Reading, I ; Chorozoglou, M ; Sturmey, G ; Davey, I ; Grocott, M (BMJ PUBLISHING GROUP, 2022-04-01)
    INTRODUCTION: Physical rehabilitation delivered early following admission to the intensive care unit (ICU) has the potential to improve short-term and long-term outcomes. The use of supine cycling together with other rehabilitation techniques has potential as a method of introducing rehabilitation earlier in the patient journey. The aim of the study is to determine the feasibility of delivering the designed protocol of a randomised clinical trial comparing a protocolised early rehabilitation programme including cycling with usual care. This feasibility study will inform a larger multicentre study. METHODS AND ANALYSIS: 90 acute care medical patients from two mixed medical-surgical ICUs will be recruited. We will include ventilated patients within 72 hours of initiation of mechanical ventilation and expected to be ventilated a further 48 hours or more. Patients will receive usual care or usual care plus two 30 min rehabilitation sessions 5 days/week.Feasibility outcomes are (1) recruitment of one to two patients per month per site; (2) protocol fidelity with >75% of patients commencing interventions within 72 hours of mechanical ventilation, with >70% interventions delivered; and (3) blinded outcome measures recorded at three time points in >80% of patients. Secondary outcomes are (1) strength and function, the Physical Function ICU Test-scored measured on ICU discharge; (2) hospital length of stay; and (3) mental health and physical ability at 3 months using the WHO Disability Assessment Schedule 2. An economic analysis using hospital health services data reported with an embedded health economic study will collect and assess economic and quality of life data including the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scales core, the Euroqol-5 Dimension-5 Level and the Impact of Event Score. ETHICS AND DISSEMINATION: The study has ethical approval from the South Central Hampshire A Research Ethics Committee (19/SC/0016). All amendments will be approved by this committee. An independent trial monitoring committee is overseeing the study. Results will be made available to critical care survivors, their caregivers, the critical care societies and other researchers. TRIAL REGISTRATION NUMBER: NCT03771014.
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    PRehabllitatiOn with pReoperatIve exercise and educaTion for patients undergoing major abdominal cancer surgerY: protocol for a multicentre randomised controlled TRIAL (PRIORITY TRIAL)
    Steffens, D ; Young, J ; Riedel, B ; Morton, R ; Denehy, L ; Heriot, A ; Koh, C ; Li, Q ; Bauman, A ; Sandroussi, C ; Ismail, H ; Dieng, M ; Ansari, N ; Pillinger, N ; O'Shannassy, S ; McKeown, S ; Cunningham, D ; Sheehan, K ; Iori, G ; Bartyn, J ; Solomon, M (BMC, 2022-04-22)
    BACKGROUND: Radical surgery is the mainstream treatment for patients presenting with advanced primary or recurrent gastrointestinal cancers; however, the rate of postoperative complications is exceptionally high. The current evidence suggests that improving patients' fitness during the preoperative period may enhance postoperative recovery. Thus, the primary aim of this study is to establish the effectiveness of prehabilitation with a progressive, individualised, preoperative exercise and education program compared to usual care alone in reducing the proportion of patients with postoperative in-hospital complications. The secondary aims are to investigate the effectiveness of the preoperative intervention on reducing the length of intensive care unit and hospital stay, improving quality of life and morbidity, and reducing costs. METHODS: This is a multi-centre, assessor-blinded, pragmatic, comparative, randomised controlled trial. A total of 172 patients undergoing pelvic exenteration, cytoreductive surgery, oesophagectomy, hepatectomy, gastrectomy or pancreatectomy will be recruited. Participants will be randomly allocated to prehabilitation with a preoperative exercise and education program (intervention group), delivered over 4 to 8 weeks before surgery by community physiotherapists/exercise physiologists, or usual care alone (control group). The intervention will comprise 12 to 24 individualised, progressive exercise sessions (including aerobic/anaerobic, resistance, and respiratory exercises), recommendations of home exercises (16 to 32 sessions), and daily incidental physical activity advice. Outcome measures will be collected at baseline, the week prior to surgery, during the hospital stay, and on the day of discharge from hospital, and 1 month and 1 months postoperatively. The primary outcome will be the development of in-hospital complications. Secondary outcomes include the length of intensive care unit and hospital stay, quality of life, postoperative morbidity and costs. DISCUSSION: The successful completion of this trial will provide robust and high-quality evidence on the efficacy of a preoperative community- and home-based exercise and education intervention on important postoperative outcomes of patients undergoing major gastrointestinal cancer surgery. TRIAL REGISTRATION: This trial was registered prospectively with the Australian New Zealand Clinical Trials Registry ( ACTRN12621000617864 ) on 24th May 2021.
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    ENhAncing Lifestyle Behaviors in EndometriaL CancEr (ENABLE): A Pilot Randomized Controlled Trial
    Edbrooke, L ; Khaw, P ; Freimund, A ; Carpenter, D ; McNally, O ; Joubert, L ; Loeliger, J ; Traill, A ; Gough, K ; Mileshkin, L ; Denehy, L (SAGE PUBLICATIONS INC, 2022-01-01)
    PURPOSE: Endometrial cancer is associated with the highest comorbid disease burden of any cancer. The aim of this trial was to assess the feasibility and safety of an allied health intervention during adjuvant treatment. METHODS: A mixed-methods pilot randomized (2:1) controlled trial with concealed allocation and assessor-blinding. Eligibility criteria: adjuvant endometrial cancer treatment scheduled, disease stage I-IIIC1, ECOG 0-2 and able to perform unsupervised physical activity (PA). Participants received usual care and 8 sessions of weekly, individualized, lifestyle education (diet and PA) with behavior change and social support (intervention group), delivered predominantly by telehealth, or usual care alone. Feasibility outcomes: recruitment and consent rates, decline reasons, program acceptability, intervention adherence and retention. RESULTS: 22/44 eligible patients (50%, 95%CI: 36%, 64%) were recruited over 10 months (14 intervention, 8 usual care). The recruitment rate was 2.2 patients/month (95%CI: 1.4, 3.3). Patients who declined had too much going on (7/22, 32%) or were not interested (6/22, 27%). Mean (SD) age and BMI were 63.2 years (6.8) and 31.9 kg/m2 (6.7). A majority were FIGO stage I (15/22, 68%) and received vaginal brachytherapy (14/22, 64%). Adherence was high, 11/14 (79%, 95%CI: 52%, 92%) participants attended >70% of scheduled sessions. Retention was 100% (95%CI: 85%, 100%) at 9 weeks, however completion of objective measures was impacted by COVID-19 restrictions. Telehealth and online questionnaires enabled participation. No serious adverse events occurred. CONCLUSION: The intervention was acceptable to participants with high levels of adherence and retention. Trial findings will be used to design a future RCT. TRIAL REGISTRATION: The trial was registered on www.anzctr.org.au (ACTRN12619000631101) 29/04/2019.
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    Implementability of healthcare interventions: an overview of reviews and development of a conceptual framework
    Klaic, M ; Kapp, S ; Hudson, P ; Chapman, W ; Denehy, L ; Story, D ; Francis, JJ (BMC, 2022-01-27)
    BACKGROUND: Implementation research may play an important role in reducing research waste by identifying strategies that support translation of evidence into practice. Implementation of healthcare interventions is influenced by multiple factors including the organisational context, implementation strategies and features of the intervention as perceived by people delivering and receiving the intervention. Recently, concepts relating to perceived features of interventions have been gaining traction in published literature, namely, acceptability, fidelity, feasibility, scalability and sustainability. These concepts may influence uptake of healthcare interventions, yet there seems to be little consensus about their nature and impact. The aim of this paper is to develop a testable conceptual framework of implementability of healthcare interventions that includes these five concepts. METHODS: A multifaceted approach was used to develop and refine a conceptual framework of implementability of healthcare interventions. An overview of reviews identified reviews published between January 2000 and March 2021 that focused on at least one of the five concepts in relation to a healthcare intervention. These findings informed the development of a preliminary framework of implementability of healthcare interventions which was presented to a panel of experts. A nominal group process was used to critique, refine and agree on a final framework. RESULTS: A total of 252 publications were included in the overview of reviews. Of these, 32% were found to be feasible, 4% reported sustainable changes in practice and 9% were scaled up to other populations and/or settings. The expert panel proposed that scalability and sustainability of a healthcare intervention are dependent on its acceptability, fidelity and feasibility. Furthermore, acceptability, fidelity and feasibility require re-evaluation over time and as the intervention is developed and then implemented in different settings or with different populations. The final agreed framework of implementability provides the basis for a chronological, iterative approach to planning for wide-scale, long-term implementation of healthcare interventions. CONCLUSIONS: We recommend that researchers consider the factors acceptability, fidelity and feasibility (proposed to influence sustainability and scalability) during the preliminary phases of intervention development, evaluation and implementation, and iteratively check these factors in different settings and over time.
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    Effect of a postoperative home-based exercise and self-management programme on physical function in people with lung cancer (CAPACITY): protocol for a randomised controlled trial
    Granger, CL ; Edbrooke, L ; Antippa, P ; Wright, G ; McDonald, CF ; Lamb, KE ; Irving, L ; Krishnasamy, M ; Abo, S ; Whish-Wilson, GA ; Truong, D ; Denehy, L ; Parry, SM (BMJ PUBLISHING GROUP, 2022-01-01)
    INTRODUCTION: Exercise is important in the postoperative management of lung cancer, yet no strong evidence exists for delivery of home-based programmes. Our feasibility (phase I) study established feasibility of a home-based exercise and self-management programme (the programme) delivered postoperatively. This efficacy (phase II) study aims to determine whether the programme, compared with usual care, is effective in improving physical function (primary outcome) in patients after lung cancer surgery. METHODS AND ANALYSIS: This will be a prospective, multisite, two-arm parallel 1:1, randomised controlled superiority trial with assessors blinded to group allocation. 112 participants scheduled for surgery for lung cancer will be recruited and randomised to usual care (no exercise programme) or, usual care plus the 12-week programme. The primary outcome is physical function measured with the EORTC QLQ c30 questionnaire. Secondary outcomes include health-related quality of life (HRQoL); exercise capacity; muscle strength; physical activity levels and patient reported outcomes. HRQoL and patient-reported outcomes will be measured to 12 months, and survival to 5 years. In a substudy, patient experience interviews will be conducted in a subgroup of intervention participants. ETHICS AND DISSEMINATION: Ethics approval was gained from all sites. Results will be submitted for publications in peer-reviewed journals. TRIAL REGISTRATION NUMBER: ACTRN12617001283369.
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    Digital Health Policy and Programs for Hospital Care in Vietnam: Scoping Review.
    Tran, DM ; Thwaites, CL ; Van Nuil, JI ; McKnight, J ; Luu, AP ; Paton, C ; Vietnam ICU Translational Applications Laboratory (VITAL), (JMIR Publications Inc., 2022-02-09)
    BACKGROUND: There are a host of emergent technologies with the potential to improve hospital care in low- and middle-income countries such as Vietnam. Wearable monitors and artificial intelligence-based decision support systems could be integrated with hospital-based digital health systems such as electronic health records (EHRs) to provide higher level care at a relatively low cost. However, the appropriate and sustainable application of these innovations in low- and middle-income countries requires an understanding of the local government's requirements and regulations such as technology specifications, cybersecurity, data-sharing protocols, and interoperability. OBJECTIVE: This scoping review aims to explore the current state of digital health research and the policies that govern the adoption of digital health systems in Vietnamese hospitals. METHODS: We conducted a scoping review using a modification of the PRISMA-ScR (Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses Extension for Scoping Reviews) guidelines. PubMed and Web of Science were searched for academic publications, and Thư Viện Pháp Luật, a proprietary database of Vietnamese government documents, and the Vietnam Electronic Health Administration website were searched for government documents. Google Scholar and Google Search were used for snowballing searches. The sources were assessed against predefined eligibility criteria through title, abstract, and full-text screening. Relevant information from the included sources was charted and summarized. The review process was primarily undertaken by one researcher and reviewed by another researcher during each step. RESULTS: In total, 11 academic publications and 20 government documents were included in this review. Among the academic studies, 5 reported engineering solutions for information systems in hospitals, 2 assessed readiness for EHR implementation, 1 tested physicians' performance before and after using clinical decision support software, 1 reported a national laboratory information management system, and 2 reviewed the health system's capability to implement eHealth and artificial intelligence. Of the 20 government documents, 19 were promulgated from 2013 to 2020. These regulations and guidance cover a wide range of digital health domains, including hospital information management systems, general and interoperability standards, cybersecurity in health organizations, conditions for the provision of health information technology (HIT), electronic health insurance claims, laboratory information systems, HIT maturity, digital health strategies, electronic medical records, EHRs, and eHealth architectural frameworks. CONCLUSIONS: Research about hospital-based digital health systems in Vietnam is very limited, particularly implementation studies. Government regulations and guidance for HIT in health care organizations have been released with increasing frequency since 2013, targeting a variety of information systems such as electronic medical records, EHRs, and laboratory information systems. In general, these policies were focused on the basic specifications and standards that digital health systems need to meet. More research is needed in the future to guide the implementation of digital health care systems in the Vietnam hospital setting.
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    Predicting muscle loss during lung cancer treatment (PREDICT): protocol for a mixed methods prospective study
    Kiss, NK ; Denehy, L ; Edbrooke, L ; Prado, CM ; Ball, D ; Siva, S ; Abbott, G ; Ugalde, A ; Fraser, SF ; Everitt, S ; Hardcastle, N ; Wirth, A ; Daly, RM (BMJ PUBLISHING GROUP, 2021-09-01)
    INTRODUCTION: Low muscle mass and low muscle attenuation (radiodensity), reflecting increased muscle adiposity, are prevalent muscle abnormalities in people with lung cancer receiving curative intent chemoradiation therapy (CRT) or radiation therapy (RT). Currently, there is a limited understanding of the magnitude, determinants and clinical significance of these muscle abnormalities in the lung cancer CRT/RT population. The primary objective of this study is to identify the predictors of muscle abnormalities (low muscle mass and muscle attenuation) and their depletion over time in people with lung cancer receiving CRT/RT. Secondary objectives are to assess the magnitude of change in these parameters and their association with health-related quality of life, treatment completion, toxicities and survival. METHODS AND ANALYSIS: Patients diagnosed with lung cancer and planned for treatment with CRT/RT are invited to participate in this prospective observational study, with a target of 120 participants. The impact and predictors of muscle abnormalities (assessed via CT at the third lumbar vertebra) prior to and 2 months post CRT/RT on the severity of treatment toxicities, treatment completion and survival will be assessed by examining the following variables: demographic and clinical factors, weight loss, malnutrition, muscle strength, physical performance, energy and protein intake, physical activity and sedentary time, risk of sarcopenia (Strength, Assistance in walking, Rise from a chair, Climb stairs, Falls history (SARC-F) score alone and with calf-circumference) and systemic inflammation. A sample of purposively selected participants with muscle abnormalities will be invited to take part in semistructured interviews to understand their ability to cope with treatment and explore preference for treatment strategies focused on nutrition and exercise. ETHICS AND DISSEMINATION: The PREDICT study received ethics approval from the Human Research Ethics Committee at Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre (HREC/53147/PMCC-2019) and Deakin University (2019-320). Findings will be disseminated through peer review publications and conference presentations.