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New and Improved treatments

Reducing tumour growth through exercise in women with advanced breast cancer and bone metastasis

Edith Cowan University Professor

Robert Newton

Bone is the most common location that breast cancer spreads to (metastasises), and is found in 80 per cent of breast cancer patients with the advanced stage of disease. Once breast cancer spreads to bone, it is incurable as there are no effective treatments currently available.

Breast cancer in its advanced stage often spreads to the spine and pelvis, resulting in pain and stiffness that leads women to avoid physical activity which reduces their overall health.

However, exercise has been shown to provide wide-ranging health benefits to cancer patients, such as survival, quality of life, and reduced bone pain; therefore strategies to promote safe and effective delivery of exercise to women with advanced breast cancer and bone metastasis is very important.

Initial exercise is believed to have an anti-cancer effect, slowing tumour growth by changing tumour biology, as well as an ability to increase blood-flow to tumour sites which helps make other therapies, such as chemotherapy, more effective.

Professor Robert Newton and his team will deliver safe and effective exercise programs using resistance and aerobic exercise to women with advanced breast cancer over 12 weeks to investigate reductions in tumour growth, improved quality of life, better physical function in muscle and bone, and healthier heart and lungs.

The aim is that the program would become immediately available and implemented for all advanced breast cancer patients in Australia.

Edith Cowan University Professor

Robert Newton