Document Type


Publication Title

European Journal of Vascular and Endovascular Surgery


Objective: A physically active lifestyle reduces the risk of cardiovascular events and functional impairment in patients with peripheral artery disease (PAD). There are limited data on the patterns of physical activity in patients with PAD compared between countries.

Methods: Self reported physical activity (sedentary vs. not) was obtained at enrolment, 3, 6, and 12 months in the US and Netherlands' cohorts of the Patient-centered Outcomes Related to Treatment Practices in Peripheral Arterial Disease: Investigating Trajectories (PORTRAIT) registry of patients with new or worsening claudication. Multivariable repeated measures using modified Poisson regression analysis compared the proportion of sedentary participants over time between countries to identify factors that attenuate intercountry differences.

Results: Of 1 098 participants, 743 (67.7%) and 355 (32.3%) were recruited from the USA and the Netherlands respectively. Compared with the Netherlands, participants from the US were older (mean age 68.6 vs. 65.3 years; p < .001), more obese (41.3% vs. 20.5%; p < .001), and more likely to be female (41.3% vs. 31.4%; p = .002). There were fewer current smokers (30.1% vs. 52.8%; p < .001) and supervised exercise referrals (1.6% vs. 63.9%; p < .001) in the US compared with the Netherlands. US participants were more sedentary at baseline (43.7% vs. 34.1%; p < .001). Sedentary behaviour decreased after three months in both countries, then diverged with an increase in sedentary participants in the USA. Risk of sedentary behaviour was significantly greater in the USA compared with the Netherlands at 12 months, after adjustment of sociodemographic, lifestyle factors, and comorbidities (relative risk [RR] 1.56, 95% confidence interval [CI] 1.08-2.25; p = .020) but was attenuated after accounting for referral to supervised exercise (RR 1.20, 95% CI 0.67-2.16; p = .54).

Conclusion: Referral to supervised exercise was key in explaining the observed difference in the physical activity levels between patients with PAD in the USA and the Netherlands. Further promotion of supervised exercise for PAD may improve physical activity in patients with PAD and modify cultural norms of inactivity in the US.



Publication Date



Peripheral artery disease, Physical activity