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Usability and Acceptability of a Novel Secondary Prevention Initiative Targeting Physical Activity for Individuals after a Transient Ischaemic Attack or “Minor” Stroke: A Qualitative Study

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O’Connor, Sean R. 
Kee, Frank 
Mant, Jonathan 
Cupples, Margaret E.  ORCID logo


Behavioural interventions that address cardiovascular risk factors such as physical inactivity and hypertension help reduce recurrence risk following a transient ischaemic attack (TIA) or “minor” stroke, but an optimal approach for providing secondary prevention is unclear. After developing an initial draft of an innovative manual for patients, aiming to promote secondary prevention following TIA or minor stroke, we aimed to explore views about its usability and acceptability amongst relevant stakeholders. We held three focus group discussions with 18 participants (people who had experienced a TIA or minor stroke (4), carers (1), health professionals (9), and researchers (4). Reflexive thematic analysis identified the following three inter-related themes: (1) relevant information and content, (2) accessibility of format and helpful structure, and (3) strategies to optimise use and implementation in practice. Information about stroke, medication, diet, physical activity, and fatigue symptoms was valued. Easily accessed advice and practical tips were considered to provide support and reassurance and promote self-evaluation of lifestyle behaviours. Suggested refinements of the manual’s design highlighted the importance of simplifying information and providing reassurance for patients early after a TIA or minor stroke. Information about fatigue, physical activity, and supporting goal setting was viewed as a key component of this novel secondary prevention initiative.



transient ischaemic attack, “minor” stroke, physical activity, secondary prevention, cardiovascular risk

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International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health

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