The impact of sport on health status, psychological well-being and physical performance of adults with haemophilia

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There is increasing recognition that sport is important for individuals with haemophilia; however, there remains a paucity of data of the importance of this in adults, many of whom already have joint pathology related to childhood bleeds and treatment access. This multicentre, cross-sectional study presents the impact of sport on health-related quality of life (HRQoL), physical performance and clinical outcomes in adults with haemophilia.


Fifty adults aged 35.12±14.7 with mild (n = 12), moderate (n = 10), or severe (n = 28) haemophilia A (70%) or B (30%) from four haemophilia centres across the United Kingdom participated in the study. A total of 64% were overweight/obese according to their BMI; median orthopaedic joint scores using the WFH Orthopaedic Joint Score (OJS) were 6 (range 0–48). On a VAS pain scale (range of 0–10), patients reported mean score of 5.66 ± 2.4. 36% of participants reported not doing any sport, mainly due to their physical condition. However, 64% of participants reported undertaking sporting activity including contact sports, mostly twice per week in average 4 h week−1. Participating in sport did not have a statistically significant impact on HRQoL; except in the domain ‘sport and leisure’ of the Haem-A-QoL. Patients doing more sport reported significantly better HRQoL than those doing less sport (P < 0.005). Those doing sport for more than 4 h week−1 had a significantly better physical performance than patients doing less sport (assessed with Hep-Test-Q). Encouraging physical activity and sport in older patients with haemophilia may have a direct impact on their HRQoL; thus, education about sport activity should be incorporated into routine haemophilia care.

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