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‘I Live a Kind of Shadow Life’: Individual Experiences of COVID-19 Recovery and the Impact on Physical Activity Levels

James Shelley, Joanne Hudson Orcid Logo, Kelly Mackintosh Orcid Logo, Zoe L. Saynor, Jamie Duckers, Keir Lewis Orcid Logo, Gwyneth Davies Orcid Logo, Ronan M. G. Berg, Melitta McNarry Orcid Logo

International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, Volume: 18, Issue: 21, Start page: 11417

Swansea University Authors: James Shelley, Joanne Hudson Orcid Logo, Kelly Mackintosh Orcid Logo, Keir Lewis Orcid Logo, Gwyneth Davies Orcid Logo, Melitta McNarry Orcid Logo

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Abstract

Understanding of strategies to support individuals recovering from Coronavirus Disease-19 (COVID-19) is limited. ‘Long-COVID’ is a multisystem disease characterised by a range of res-piratory, gastrointestinal, cardiovascular, neurological, and musculoskeletal symptoms extending beyond 12 weeks. The...

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Published in: International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
ISSN: 1660-4601
Published: MDPI AG 2021
Online Access: Check full text

URI: https://cronfa.swan.ac.uk/Record/cronfa58491
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Abstract: Understanding of strategies to support individuals recovering from Coronavirus Disease-19 (COVID-19) is limited. ‘Long-COVID’ is a multisystem disease characterised by a range of res-piratory, gastrointestinal, cardiovascular, neurological, and musculoskeletal symptoms extending beyond 12 weeks. The aim of this study was to explore individuals’ experiences of recovering from COVID-19 to provide a better understanding of the acute and long-term impact of the disease on physical activity (PA). Individualised semi-structured interviews were conducted with 48 adults recovering from COVID-19 at 6-11 months post-infection. An inductive thematic analysis approach was used, reaching saturation at 14 interviews (10 female; 47±7 years). Four overarching themes were identified: i) Living with COVID-19, including managing activities of daily living; ii) Dealing with the Unknown and self-management strategies; iii) Re-introducing physical activity; and iv) Challenges of returning to work. The return to PA, whether through activities of daily living, work or exercise, is often associated with exacerbation of symptoms, presenting a range of challenges for individuals recovering from COVID-19. Individually tailored support is therefore required to address the unique challenges posed by COVID-19.
Keywords: Exercise; SARS-CoV-2; Long-COVID; rehabilitation
College: College of Engineering
Funders: Welsh Government Sêr Cymru III Tackling COVID-19 grant scheme (Reference MA/KW/1457/20); and The Higher Education Funding Council for Wales Research Wales Innovation Fund (Collaboration Booster Faculty Fund), grant number FF4. J.S. was part-funded by The Welsh Institute of Physical Activity, Health and Sport (WIPAHS)
Issue: 21
Start Page: 11417