RISE Scholars

Sharmilee Nyenhuis, MD
University of Illinois, Chicago
RISE Cohort 5


Over half of the asthma patients I see in my practice are urban AA or Hispanic women with uncontrolled asthma. From observing the difficulty they have in controlling their asthma, their low levels of physical activity and the impairment that their asthma have on their quality of life, drew me to ask, “What are the reasons for low physical activity levels in urban minority asthma patients?”, “What barriers do African American women face with engaging in physical activity?” and “Can a physical activity intervention improve asthma control?”. We have found that less than 40% of my asthma patients meet the national goals of physical activity yet the vast majority (88%) were interested in increasing their physical activity level. Importantly, over three-quarters of patients indicated that asthma is a barrier to engaging in physical activity. Building upon these findings, we propose in this current study to use stakeholder feedback to refine an existing evidence-based community walking intervention with urban AA women with asthma and test it in a pragmatic community setting.