Physical Activity Preferences for People Living With Multiple Myeloma: A Qualitative Study

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Abstract

Background:

Although physical activity (PA) has significant benefits for people living with multiple myeloma (MM), participation rates are low. Examination of PA preferences will provide important information to clinicians and assist in the development of interventions to increase participation in PA for people living with MM.

Objective:

The aim of this study is to gain an in-depth understanding of the PA preferences for people living with MM, including the preferred role of clinicians.

Methods:

Semistructured interviews were conducted with patients treated for MM within the preceding 2 to 12 months. Interviews were analyzed using content analysis, where coding categories were derived directly from the text data.

Results:

Twenty-four interviews were conducted (women, 54%; age: mean [SD], 62 [8.8] years); 16 (67%) participants had an autologous stem cell transplant. Light- to moderate-intensity PA during and after treatment was feasible, with the strongest preference for a program 2 to 8 months after treatment. The timing of information delivery was important, as was input from clinicians and organizations with knowledge of MM. Preferences for location, structure, and timing of programs varied.

Conclusions:

Low- to moderate-intensity PA after treatment is likely to interest people with MM. Programs need to be flexible and consider individual differences in PA preferences, functional status, and treatment schedules.

Implications:

An individually tailored PA program should form part of clinical care, involving clinicians and organizations with expertise in MM. Options for home-based PA are also important. Further research, including a population-based study of people living with MM, is necessary to further quantify PA preferences.

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