Sedentary Time and Screen-Based Sedentary Behaviors of Children With a Chronic Disease

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Rachel G. Walker McMaster University

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Joyce Obeid McMaster University

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Thanh Nguyen McMaster University

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Hilde Ploeger University of Amsterdam

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Nicole A. Proudfoot McMaster University

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Cecily Bos McMaster University

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Anthony K. Chan McMaster University

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Linda Pedder McMaster University

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Robert M. Issenman McMaster University

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Katrin Scheinemann McMaster University

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Maggie J. Larché McMaster University

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Karen McAssey McMaster University

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Brian W. Timmons McMaster University

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The objectives of this study were to (i) assess sedentary time and prevalence of screen-based sedentary behaviors of children with a chronic disease and (ii) compare sedentary time and prevalence of screen-based sedentary behaviors to age- and sex-matched healthy controls. Sixty-five children (aged 6-18 years) with a chronic disease participated: survivors of a brain tumor, hemophilia, type 1 diabetes mellitus, juvenile idiopathic arthritis, cystic fibrosis, and Crohn’s disease. Twenty-nine of these participants were compared with age- and sex-matched healthy controls. Sedentary time was measured objectively by an ActiGraph GT1M or GT3x accelerometer worn for 7 consecutive days and defined as less than 100 counts per min. A questionnaire was used to assess screen-based sedentary behaviors. Children with a chronic disease engaged in an average of 10.2 ± 1.4 hr of sedentary time per day, which comprised 76.5 ± 7.1% of average daily monitoring time. There were no differences between children with a chronic disease and controls in sedentary time (adjusted for wear time, p = .06) or in the prevalence of TV watching, and computer or video game usage for varying durations (p = .78, p = .39 and, p = .32 respectively). Children with a chronic disease, though relatively healthy, accumulate high levels of sedentary time, similar to those of their healthy peers.

Walker, Obeid, Nguyen, Proudfoot, Bos, Chan, Pedder, Issenman, Scheinemann, Larché, McAssey, and Timmons are with the Dept. of Pediatrics, McMaster University, Ontario, Canada. Ploeger is with the Dept. of Rehabilitation, University of Amsterdam, Amsterdam, Netherlands.

Address author correspondence to Brian W. Timmons at timmonbw@mcmaster.ca.
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