Exercise for health: a randomised controlled trial of exercise interventions among women with breast cancer

Start Year: 2006
Finish Year: 2009
Chief Investigator: Dr Sandra Hayes
Grant Type: Project Grants
Institution: Queensland University of Technology

While breast cancer continues to be the most common type of cancer experienced by Australian women, five-year relative survival rates have now reached 84%. Unfortunately, survivorship can be problematic, with many women experiencing physical and psychosocial breast cancer-related symptoms following treatment. These concerns adversely influence a breast cancer survivor’s ability to participate normally in her daily life and therefore her quality of life. As survival rates for breast cancer continue to rise, it is becoming crucial that research focuses more attention on strategies that can reduce symptoms and enhance recovery and quality of life among survivors.

Exercise has been shown to be one such strategy. Although research on exercise interventions has begun to demonstrate better outcomes for breast cancer survivors, much less attention has been given to the feasibility of integrating such programs into clinical practice and the daily lives of survivors.

This research is in direct response to this need. This project will provide valuable information in relation to the feasibility of integrating supervised versus unsupervised exercise interventions into clinical practice. It also will enable a better understanding of the physical and psychosocial benefits attained and sustained through participation in the interventions in comparison to current standard care. If these interventions prove to be successful, Dr Hayes will be in an excellent position to make recommendations for clinical practice and thus, influence the standard of care for women with breast cancer.