A Home-Based Diaphragmatic Breathing Retraining in Rural Patients With Heart Failure

Yaewon Seo, Bernice Yates, Louise Laframboise, Bunny Pozehl, Joseph F. Norman, Melody Hertzog

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Scopus citations


Dyspnea limits physical activity and functional status in heart failure patients. This feasibility study examined effects of a diaphragmatic breathing retraining (DBR) intervention delivered over 8 weeks with follow-up at 5 months. The intervention group (n = 18) was trained at baseline and received four telephone calls. An attention control group (n = 18) received four telephone calls with general health information. Results from linear mixed model analysis with effect sizes (η2) showed dyspnea improved in both groups, with little difference between groups. Compared with attention alone, the intervention increased physical activity (calories expended; η2 =.015) and functional status (η2 =.013) across the 5-month follow-up and increased activity counts at 8 weeks (η2 =.070). This intervention was feasible and demonstrated promising effects on activity and function but not by reducing dyspnea. Patients may have increased physical activity because of instructions to use DBR during activities of daily living. Further exploration of the intervention's underlying physiological effect is needed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)270-291
Number of pages22
JournalWestern journal of nursing research
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2016


  • diaphragmatic breathing
  • dyspnea
  • functional status
  • heart failure
  • physical activity
  • rural

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Nursing


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