Purpose: To assess change over time in physical activity level (PAL) after spinal cord injury (SCI), to explore its determinants, and to compare PAL 1 year after discharge from the rehabilitation center with able-bodied level. Methods: PAL, as indicated by duration of dynamic activities per day and intensity of everyday activity, was measured in 40 persons with SCI with an accelerometry-based activity monitor during 2 consecutive weekdays. Measurements were obtained at start of active rehabilitation, 3 months later, at discharge, 2 months after discharge, and 1 year after discharge. Results: Random coefficient analyses demonstrated that duration of dynamic activities and intensity of everyday activity increased during inpatient rehabilitation at rates of 41% and 19%, respectively (P<.01). Shortly after discharge, there was a strong decline (33%; P<.001) in duration of dynamic activities. One year after discharge, this decline was restored to discharge level, but was low in comparison with able-bodied level. Level and completeness of lesion were determinants of change in PAL after discharge. Conclusion: PAL increased during inpatient rehabilitation, but this increase did not continue after discharge and level 1 year after discharge was distinctly lower than able-bodied level. Subpopulations had a different change over time in PAL after discharge.

activities of daily living, rehabilitation, spinal cord injury
dx.doi.org/10.3233/978-1-60750-080-3-134, hdl.handle.net/1765/58653
Department of Rehabilitation Medicine

van den Berg-Emons, H.J.G, Bussmann, J.B.J, Haisma, J.A, Sluis, T.A.R, van der Woude, L.H, Bergen, M.P, & Stam, H.J. (2010). Prospective study on physical activity levels after spinal cord injury during inpatient rehabilitation and the year after discharge. doi:10.3233/978-1-60750-080-3-134