Medical College of Wisconsin
CTSICores SearchResearch InformaticsREDCap

Pacemaker detected active minutes are superior to pedometer-based step counts in measuring the response to physical activity counseling in sedentary older adults. BMC Geriatr 2020 05 06;20(1):162



Pubmed ID


Pubmed Central ID




Scopus ID

2-s2.0-85084386697   1 Citation


BACKGROUND: In patients with permanent pacemakers (PPM), physical activity (PA) can be monitored using embedded accelerometers to measure pacemaker detected active hours (PDAH), a strong predictor of mortality. We examined the impact of a PA Counseling (PAC) intervention on increasing activity as measured by PDAH and daily step counts.

METHODS: Thirteen patients (average age 80 ± 6 years, 84.6% women) with implanted Medtronic PPMs with a ≤ 2 PDAH daily average were included in this study. Patients were randomized to Usual Care (UC, N = 6) or a Physical Activity Counseling Intervention (PACI, N = 7) groups. Step count and PDAH data were obtained at baseline, following a 12-week intervention, then 12 weeks after intervention completion. Data were analyzed using independent t-tests, Pearson's r, chi-square, and general linear models for repeated measures.

RESULTS: PDAH significantly differed by time point for all subject combined (P = 0.01) but not by study group. Subjects with baseline gait speeds of > 0.8 m/sec were responsible for the increases in PDAH observed. Step counts did not differ over time in the entire cohort or by study group. Step count and PDAH significantly correlated at baseline (r = 0.60, P = 0.03). This correlation disappeared by week 12.

CONCLUSION(S): PDAH can be used to monitor PA and PA interventions and may be superior to hip-worn pedometers in detecting activity. A significant increase in PA, regardless of treatment group, suggests that patient awareness of the ability to monitor PA through a PPM increases PA in these patients, particularly in patients with gait speeds of < 0.8 m/sec.

TRIAL REGISTRATION: NCT03052829. Date of Registration: 2/14/2017.

Author List

Puppala VK, Hofeld BC, Anger A, Tyagi S, Strath SJ, Fox J, Berger MG, Ahn KW, Widlansky ME


Kwang Woo Ahn PhD Associate Professor in the Institute for Health and Equity department at Medical College of Wisconsin
Michael E. Widlansky MD Associate Director, Professor in the Medicine department at Medical College of Wisconsin

MESH terms used to index this publication - Major topics in bold

Aged, 80 and over
Pacemaker, Artificial