The effects of a home exercise programme on the exercise endurance of children infected with HIV

Naidoo Candice Noelle
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Background: Reduced exercise endurance is commonly seen in individuals with Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) infection. Little research is available on the impact that a home exercise program (HEP) would have on the exercise endurance of children infected with HIV. Aim: To investigate the effects of a HEP on the exercise endurance of children infected with HIV. Methods: This study was comprised of two phases which were conducted at the Rahima Moosa Mother and Child Hospital, Johannesburg. In phase I, a literature review was completed to guide the structuring of the HEP. The Nominal Group Technique (NGT) was used to validate the HEP. In phase 11, the participants were randomly allocated into an intervention or control group. The control group did not receive any exercise program within the 12 weeks and participants in this group were told to continue with their usual lifestyle. The intervention group received a 12-week HEP. Participants' endurance was assessed using the six-minute walk test (6MWT) at baseline and at the 12-week follow-up visit. Feedback regarding the enjoyment of the HEP was collected from both participants and their caregivers at follow-up. Results: Literature review results showed an effective HEP as being 12 weeks long, done three times a week, without the use of equipment. Five participants were involved in the NGT and one meeting was held. Valuable changes were made to the HEP based on feedback from the NGT. The highest-ranked suggestion was the age range. The most commonly occurring theme (as a result of the thematic analysis) was also the 'age range'. An age range of five- nine years was initially set in this study, the group advised that a smaller age range (seven- nine) would be more appropriate. (Abbreviation abstract)
A dissertation submitted to the Faculty of Health Sciences, University of the Witwatersrand, in fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Science in Physiotherapy.