Objective: Dyspnea may be a debilitating factor for people with pulmonary problems as it may cause fear of movement. The aim of the present study was to determine the related factors with breathlessness beliefs, in other words, dyspnea-related fear of movement, in patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.
Material and methods: Male patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease were included in the study. Breathlessness beliefs (Breathlessness Belief Questionnaire), perceived dyspnea severity (modified Medical Research Council Dyspnea Scale and modified Borg Scale), pulmonary function tests (forced vital capacity, forced expiration volume in 1 second, and peak expiratory flow), emotional status (Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale), fatigue (Fatigue Impact Scale and Fatigue Severity Scale), physical activity level (International Physical Activity Questionnaire-Short Form), disease-related quality of life (St. George Respiratory Questionnaire), and generic quality of life (Short-Form 36) were evaluated.
Results: A total of 70 patients were included. Significant correlations were detected between breathlessness beliefs and perceived dyspnea severity, pulmonary function tests, emotional status, fatigue, physical activity level, disease-related quality of life, and generic quality of life (P < .001). No correlations were detected between physical characteristics and dyspnea-related fear of movement (P > .05).
Conclusion: Dyspnea-related fear of movement was found to be strongly related to perceived dyspnea severity, pulmonary function tests, emotional status, fatigue, physical activity level, and quality of life; thus, including breathlessness beliefs assessment into clinical examination may help clinicians to understand their patients' needs comprehensively.