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Pneumonol Alergol Pol


INTRODUCTION: Fatigue is a known symptom of advanced lung disease and impacts quality of life and psychological health. Many of these patients undergo pulmonary rehabilitation as part of their therapy. Understanding the effect of pulmonary rehabilitation on fatigue in these patients is important, as one may be able to design more focused rehabilitation programs. The aim of this study is to evaluate the effect of pulmonary rehabilitation on fatigue as measured by the Fatigue Severity Scale (FSS) in patients with advanced lung disease. MATERIAL AND METHODS: Patients were enrolled in a standardized 6 week pulmonary rehabilitation program. They were asked to complete questionnaires to evaluate their self-reported fatigue (FSS), and depression as measured by Geriatric Depression Scale (GDS). The GDS is a self-reported assessment tool used to identify depression in patients. The FSS is a validated instrument that indicates a perception of fatigue that might require medical intervention. Participants completed questionnaires both at baseline and after completing the standardized pulmonary rehabilitation program. Data was analyzed in Statistical Analysis System (SAS). The change in FSS was evaluated using the Wilcoxon signed-rank test. P-values < 0.05 were considered statistically significant. RESULTS: 21 patients (12 females; 9 males; mean age 64.3 +/- 11.2 yrs) were considered for the study. Pre-pulmonary rehabilitation FSS scores ranged from 1.6 to 6.7 (mean score of 4.6 +/- 1.7). Post pulmonary rehabilitation FSS scores ranged 1.0 to 6.2 (mean score of 3.9 +/- 1.6). The median pre-rehabilitation FSS was 5.3 (inter quartile range; Q1-Q3: 3.0-6.1), and median post rehabilitation FSS was 3.9 (inter quartile range; Q1-Q3: 2.6-5.1). There was a significant decrease in FSS scores after completing pulmonary rehabilitation program (p < 0.0208). There was a decrease in GDS (pre-rehabilitation, mean: 5.5 +/- 3.6; post-rehabilitation, mean: 4.2 +/- 2.9), but this decrease was not statistically significant. The change in GDS correlated with the change in FSS (Spearman Correlation Coefficient 0.525, p < 0.0146). CONCLUSIONS: Patients with advanced lung disease reported a measurable component of fatigue. Participating in pulmonary rehabilitation resulted in significant improvement in patient's self-reported fatigue severity. Further studies are necessary to evaluate and design interventions to improve fatigue in in the setting of advanced lung disease.

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Faculty; Northwell Researcher


School of Medicine; Northwell Health

Primary Department

Pulmonary, Critical Care, and Sleep Medicine