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Breast Cancer Rehabilitation: Impact on Physical Activity and Quality of Life

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Breast Cancer Rehabilitation: Impact on Physical Activity and Quality of Life
Gardner, Leah
Breast cancer is the most common form of cancer that affects women in the United States. For 2010, it was estimated that there were 207,090 new cases of invasive breast cancer diagnoses in women (ACS, 2010). Treatments for breast cancer have many side effects, including decreased physical activity and quality of life. Although physical activity has a positive impact on quality of life, breast cancer survivors often decrease physical activity participation during the treatment time period. The purpose of this study was to examine the impact of comprehensive rehabilitation on physical activity and quality of life in breast cancer survivors immediately following treatment. Participants were recruited from Wake Forest Baptist Health and Moses Cone Cancer Centers. Upon consenting to the study, the participants were required to attend three exercise sessions that included aerobic, resistance and flexibility training. Along with the exercise component, the program included baseline patient assessment, nutrition counseling, physical activity counseling, and social support. Physical activity was assessed by the Godin Physical Activity Questionnaire (PAQ) and accelerometers. Quality of life was assessed by the Satisfaction with Life Scale (SWLS), FACT-G and FACT-B. A Repeated Measures ANOVA showed a significant (p < .0001) increase over the six months in PAQ minutes per week of moderate physical activity and a significant (p < .05) increase from baseline to three months in physical activity energy expenditure, calories expended per day doing physical activity, and minutes of moderate to vigorous exercise per day. There was also a significant (p < .05) increase in the FACT-B, FACT-G overall, and its functional subscale. There was no overall significant change in SWLS; however, there was a trend for an increase from baseline to six months (p = 0.056). At baseline, a Spearman Correlation demonstrated a significant moderate correlation between minutes of moderate-vigorous exercise and the FACT-G (r = 0.51), functional subscale (r = 0.59), and a trend with SWLS (r = 0.46). There was also a significant moderate correlation between PAEE and the functional subscale (r = 0.48) at baseline. Future research and the continuation of this study should assist in developing exercise prescription guidelines for this population. Efforts aimed at recruiting a larger sample and implementing a comprehensive rehabilitation program on a larger scale are warranted.
Mihalko, Shannon L (committee chair)
Brubaker, Peter (committee member)
Vitolins, Mara (committee member)
2012-06-12T08:35:59Z (accessioned)
2014-06-12T08:30:07Z (available)
2012 (issued)
Health and Exercise Science (discipline)
2014-06-12 (terms)
http://hdl.handle.net/10339/37285 (uri)
en (iso)
Wake Forest University

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