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Article

Effectiveness of Text Messaging as an Incentive to Maintain Physical Activity after Cardiac Rehabilitation: A Randomized Controlled Pilot Study

1
Sports and Exercise Medicine Division, Department of Medicine, University of Padova, 35128 Padova, Italy
2
Clinical Network of Sports and Exercise Medicine of the Veneto Region, 35128 Padova, Italy
3
UOA Cardiology, Rehabilitation Cardiology, ASSL 6 “Euganea”, Cittadella Hospital, 35013 Cittadella, Italy
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Pantelis T. Nikolaidis
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(12), 6645; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18126645
Received: 20 April 2021 / Revised: 4 June 2021 / Accepted: 17 June 2021 / Published: 21 June 2021
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Functional Evaluation and Exercise Prescription in Chronic Diseases)
Although the efficacy of cardiac rehabilitation (CR) is proven, the need to improve patients’ adherence has emerged. There are only a few studies that have investigated the effect of sending text messages after a CR period to stimulate subjects’ ongoing engagement in regular physical activity (PA). A randomized controlled pilot trial was conducted after CR, sending a daily PA text message reminder to an intervention group (IG), which was compared with a usual care control group (CG) during three months of follow-up. Thirty-two subjects were assessed pre- and post-study intervention with GPAQ, submaximal iso-watt exercise testing, a 30 s sit-to-stand test, a bilateral arm curl test, and a final survey on a seven-point Likert scale. A statistically significant difference in the increase of moderate PA time (Δ 244.7 (95% CI 189.1, 300.4) minutes, p < 0.001) and in the reduction of sedentary behavior time (Δ −77.5 (95% CI 104.9, −50.1) minutes, p = 0.004) was shown when the IG was compared with the CG. This was associated with an improvement in heart rate, blood pressure, and patients’ Borg rating on the category ratio scale 10 (CR10) in iso-watt exercise testing (all p < 0.05). Furthermore, only the IG did not show a worsening of the strength parameters in the follow-up leading to a change of the 30 s sit-to-stand test with a difference of +2.2 (95% CI 1.23, 3.17) repetitions compared to CG (p = 0.03). The telemedical intervention has been appreciated by the IG, whose willingness to continue with regular PA emerged to be superior compared to the CG. Text messages are an effective and inexpensive adjuvant after phase 2 CR that improves adherence to regular PA. Further studies are needed to confirm these results in a larger patient population and in the long term. View Full-Text
Keywords: ischemic cardiomyopathy; coronary heart disease; exercise training; GPAQ; exercise testing; strength testing ischemic cardiomyopathy; coronary heart disease; exercise training; GPAQ; exercise testing; strength testing
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MDPI and ACS Style

Foccardi, G.; Vecchiato, M.; Neunhaeuserer, D.; Mezzaro, M.; Quinto, G.; Battista, F.; Duregon, F.; Carlon, R.; Ermolao, A. Effectiveness of Text Messaging as an Incentive to Maintain Physical Activity after Cardiac Rehabilitation: A Randomized Controlled Pilot Study. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18, 6645. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18126645

AMA Style

Foccardi G, Vecchiato M, Neunhaeuserer D, Mezzaro M, Quinto G, Battista F, Duregon F, Carlon R, Ermolao A. Effectiveness of Text Messaging as an Incentive to Maintain Physical Activity after Cardiac Rehabilitation: A Randomized Controlled Pilot Study. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health. 2021; 18(12):6645. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18126645

Chicago/Turabian Style

Foccardi, Giulia, Marco Vecchiato, Daniel Neunhaeuserer, Michele Mezzaro, Giulia Quinto, Francesca Battista, Federica Duregon, Roberto Carlon, and Andrea Ermolao. 2021. "Effectiveness of Text Messaging as an Incentive to Maintain Physical Activity after Cardiac Rehabilitation: A Randomized Controlled Pilot Study" International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health 18, no. 12: 6645. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18126645

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