BACKGROUND: Hospital stays are associated with high levels of sedentary behavior and physical inactivity. To objectively investigate physical behavior of hospitalized patients, these is a need for valid measurement instruments. The aim of this study was to assess the criterion validity of three accelerometers to measure lying, sitting, standing and walking.
METHODS: This cross-sectional study was performed in a university hospital. Participants carried out several mobility tasks according to a structured protocol while wearing three accelerometers (ActiGraph GT9X Link, Activ8 Professional and Dynaport MoveMonitor). The participants were guided through the protocol by a test leader and were recorded on video to serve as reference. Sensitivity, specificity, positive predictive values (PPV) and negative predictive values (NPV) were determined for the categories lying, sitting, standing and walking.
RESULTS: In total 12 subjects were included with a mean age of 49.5 (SD 21.5) years and a mean body mass index of 23.8 kg/m2 (SD 2.4). The ActiGraph GT9X Link showed an excellent sensitivity (90%) and PPV (98%) for walking, but a poor sensitivity for sitting and standing (57% and 53%), and a poor PPV (43%) for sitting. The Activ8 Professional showed an excellent sensitivity for sitting and walking (95% and 93%), excellent PPV (98%) for walking, but no sensitivity (0%) and PPV (0%) for lying. The Dynaport MoveMonitor showed an excellent sensitivity for sitting (94%), excellent PPV for lying and walking (100% and 99%), but a poor sensitivity (13%) and PPV (19%) for standing.
CONCLUSIONS: The validity outcomes for the categories lying, sitting, standing and walking vary between the investigated accelerometers. All three accelerometers scored good to excellent in identifying walking. None of the accelerometers were able to identify all categories validly.