Physical Activity and Potential Correlates in Hemodialysis Patients

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Background: Hemodialysis patients (HDP) often suffer from kidney failure with comorbidities, such as depression, anxiety and stress. Physical activity (PA) has a positive influence on these comorbidities. Objective: The purpose was to determine the current level of PA and identify potential correlates influencing PA in HDP to deduce prevention approaches. Material and methods: Data were collected in 13 dialysis centers in Bavaria. A standardized questionnaire was used to analyze PA (EHIS-PAQ) and influencing factors in 240 HDP. Gender differences were calculated using the t‑test and the Mann-Whitney U‑test (significance level p < 0.05). For correlation analyses with PA, Spearman’s correlation coefficient rs and multivariate logistic regression analysis were used. Results: The results showed that HDP were on average moderately active for 76.31 min per week (standard deviation, SD 124.02 min). Male HDP were less active and showed significantly more depressive symptoms than female HDP (p < 0.05). The HDP who were more active assessed their subjective health condition on a higher level than HDP who were not active. Depression, stress, and age showed a negative association and sport-specific self-efficacy a positive association with PA (p < 0.05). Multivariate logistic regression revealed that sport-specific self-efficacy increased the chance of becoming physically active while depression reduced the chance of achieving 150 min PA. Conclusion: The majority of HDP were barely active. The results reveal the necessity to further promote PA in patients with chronic renal failure. Physicians should be aware of patients’ self-efficacy as well as depressive symptoms and develop concepts that strengthen the self-efficacy and promote the positive effects of PA on health.