Exercise Can Decrease Fatigue in Chemotherapy Patients

-- Rick Ansorge

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

WEDNESDAY, Oct. 14 (HealthDay News) -- In cancer patients who are undergoing chemotherapy, a multi-modal exercise program may significantly reduce fatigue, according to a study published online Oct. 13 in BMJ.

Lis Adamsen, Ph.D., of the University of Copenhagen in Denmark, and colleagues randomly assigned 73 male patients and 196 female patients, ages 20 to 65 years, to either standard care in addition to an exercise program consisting of high intensity cardiovascular and resistance training, relaxation and body awareness training and massage, or to standard care alone.

After six weeks, the researchers found that the exercise group had a mean reduction of 6.6 points for the primary outcome -- fatigue as assessed by the European Organization for Research and Treatment of Cancer Quality of Life Questionnaire -- compared to the control group. They also found that exercise significantly increased vitality, aerobic capacity, muscular strength, and physical and functional activity, and emotional well-being, but had no significant effect on global health status or quality of life.

"The present study had a clear majority of female patients (73 percent)," the authors write. "However, the number of people with cancer each year is evenly distributed between the two sexes. We therefore recommend that interventions should be developed with greater appeal to male patients."

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Specialties Cardiology
Diabetes & Endocrinology
Internal Medicine
Family Practice

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