The Effects of Communication Technology Use On Older Prostate Cancer Survivors' Physical Activity Participation
Methods: This study utilized the data from the first round of the 2011 National Health and Aging Trend Study (NHATS), a successor of National Long Term Care Surveys (1982-2004), which collected information on a nationally representative sample of Medicare beneficiaries ages 65 and older. The NHATS has been designed in a complex way, and uses a stratified three-stage sample design. The sample was comprised of community-dwelling older prostate cancer survivors (N=320). Multinomial logistic regression analysis was employed to identify factors associated with older prostate cancer survivors’ regular walking and vigorous activity participation (base outcome=inactive group). For data analyses, this study used survey software, Stata 10.0 (StataCorp, 2007) and all estimates take weighted statistics.
Results: The sample actively used communication technology (46%), and attended clubs or organization activities (38%) and volunteering activities (30%). About 24% of the sample was physically inactive, while 30% and 46% of the sample ever went walking for exercise and participating in vigorous physical activities (working out, running, biking) in the past month, respectively. We found different factors associated with older prostate cancer survivors to engage in vigorous activity or walking for exercise. Older prostate cancer survivors were more likely to engage in vigorous activity when they were younger, healthier, attending clubs or organizational activities and using communication technology than the inactive group. Younger and married older prostate cancer survivors were more likely to walk for exercise than the inactive group.
Conclusion/Implications: The findings indicate that communication technology use can contribute to older prostate cancer survivors’ physical activity participation. Communication technology may be a useful intervention tool to increase older prostate cancer survivors’ engagement in vigorous activities in conjunction with social activity. Since married older prostate cancer survivors were more likely to engage in walking for exercise, exercise programs to target older couples would benefit married older prostate cancer survivors to continuously engage in routine physical activities with their spouse.