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Sleep Apnea Patients Clustered by Intention to Exercise

Four groups identified based on attitude and willingness to exercise

THURSDAY, Dec. 20 (HealthDay News) -- An analysis of intention to exercise in obstructive sleep apnea patients has identified four patient types based on their attitude and inclination to exercise, researchers report in the Dec. 15 issue of the Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine.

Simon S. Smith, Ph.D., and colleagues from the Queensland Sleep Health Group in Australia surveyed the intention to exercise in 206 consecutive patients with obstructive sleep apnea attending a sleep disorders service. Patients were classified as being in one of five stages of change based on the Transtheoretical Model of behavior change.

The researchers found that 41 percent of patients were in the preparation stage (do not exercise regularly but were seriously considering doing so in the next 30 days), 27 percent were in the maintenance stage (exercising regularly for at least six months), 19 percent were in the pre-contemplation stage (do not exercise regularly and not considering doing so in the next six months), and 10 percent were in the action stage (exercising regularly for less than six months).

"The results may help to identify patients who are more likely to engage in increased exercise, and to identify barriers to exercise in patients less inclined to increase their exercise," Smith and colleagues conclude.

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