A multimodal physiotherapy programme plus deep water running for improving cancer-related fatigue and quality of life in breast cancer survivors

Authors: Cuesta-Vargas AI (1,2) , Buchan J (3) , Arroyo-Morales M (4)
(1) Department of Physiotherapy, Faculty of Health Science, University of Malaga (2) School Clinical Science, Queensland University of Technology (3) Faculty of Health, Queensland University of Technology (4) Physiotherapy, University of Granada
Source: Eur J Cancer Care (Engl). 2014 Jan;23(1):15-21
DOI: 10.1111/ecc.12114 Publication date: 2014 Jan E-Publication date: Aug. 16, 2013 Availability: abstract Copyright: © 2013 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.
Language: English Countries: Not specified Location: Not specified Correspondence address: Antonio I. Cuesta-Vargas, Physiotherapy, University of Malaga, Av. Martiricos s/n, 29009 Malaga, Spain (e-mail: acuesta@uma.es; acuesta.var@gmail.com).


Article abstract

The aim of the study was to assess the feasibility and effectiveness of aquatic-based exercise in the form of deep water running (DWR) as part of a multimodal physiotherapy programme (MMPP) for breast cancer survivors. A controlled clinical trial was conducted in 42 primary breast cancer survivors recruited from community-based Primary Care Centres. Patients in the experimental group received a MMPP incorporating DWR, 3 times a week, for an 8-week period. The control group received a leaflet containing instructions to continue with normal activities. Statistically significant improvements and intergroup effect size were found for the experimental group for Piper Fatigue Scale-Revised total score (d = 0.7, P = 0.001), as well as behavioural/severity (d = 0.6, P = 0.05), affective/meaning (d = 1.0, P = 0.001) and sensory (d = 0.3, P = 0.03) domains. Statistically significant differences between the experimental and control groups were also found for general health (d = 0.5, P < 0.05) and quality of life (d = 1.3, P < 0.05). All participants attended over 80% of sessions, with no major adverse events reported. The results of this study suggest MMPP incorporating DWR decreases cancer-related fatigue and improves general health and quality of life in breast cancer survivors. Further, the high level of adherence and lack of adverse events indicate such a programme is safe and feasible.

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