Guidelines recommend a healthy lifestyle and regularly physical activity (PA) after kidney transplantation (KTx). The KTx360° program is a multicenter, multisectoral, multimodal, telemedicine-based follow-up care program. Effects of the first COVID-19 wave restrictions on health-related quality of life and PA of supervised KTx360° patients were evaluated using an online questionnaire. Six hundred and fifty-two KTx360° patients were contacted via email and were asked to complete the Freiburg questionnaire of physical activity and the Short form 12 Health Survey (SF-12) online. Pre-pandemic and lockdown data were compared in 248 data sets. While sporting activity decreased during the COVID-19 pandemic, basic and leisure activity increased, resulting in increased overall activity. The physical component scale of the SF-12 was in the low normal range before as well as during the pandemic, with a small but significant increase during the pandemic. The mental component scale showed normal values before and during pandemic with a small but statistically significant decrease. Our study supports the effectiveness of a telemedicine based program for KTx patient care in maintaining PA and quality of life during the first peak of the COVID-19 pandemic. However, further research and observation during the ongoing pandemic are required.
Keywords: COVID-19; QoL; kidney transplantation; physical activity; quality of life; restrictions.