Researchers from the University of South Carolina Arnold School of Public Health and the Shirley Ryan Ability Laboratory (Center for Rehabilitation Outcomes Research) have completed a study on the use of physical activity monitors in rheumatic populations. The study was led Arnold School of Public Health assistant professor of exercise science Dr. Christine Pellegrini and was published in Current Rheumatology Reports.
The authors conducted this review in order to provide an overview of the recent research using physical activity monitors in rheumatic populations. These populations include individuals with osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, systemic lupus erythematosus, and fibromyalgia.
Through their review, Dr. Pellegrini and her collaborators found that recent research demonstrates increased use of physical activity monitors in these populations, especially in those with osteoarthritis. In examining cross-sectional, longitudinal and intervention studies, the authors found that the results highlight that physical activity levels are below recommended guidelines. However, evidence suggests benefits such as improving pain, fatigue, function, and overall well-being.
They concluded that while the use of physical activity monitors in rheumatic populations is increasing, more research is needed to better understand physical activity levels in these populations, the effects of activity on relevant clinical outcomes, and how monitors can be used to help more individuals reach physical activity guidelines.