Strong evidence exists supporting the beneficial effect of physical activity for cancer patients on health-related quality of life (HRQoL) involving physical, psychological and social components. French Comprehensive Cancer Center Oscar Lambret (COL) and National Federation CAMI Sport & Cancer opened Sport and Cancer center on 9/2016 with supervised exercise programs. The objective of this work was to evaluate effectiveness of this intervention from 9/2016 to 2/2018.
Patients undergoing treatment (chemotherapy, target therapy, radiotherapy, hormone therapy) were oriented by the health professionals to the medico-sportive educator (MSE). The MSE was responsible for the patient’s safety while maintaining a high enough level of intensity of physical activity, for helping patients achieve clinical goals in a coordinated program. PAS (Physical Activity and Sportive trainings were performed during 6 months with 2 sessions of 60 minutes per week of strength training and aerobic exercise. The sessions were held collectively (12 participants maximum) or individually or in pairs. Evaluations were made at baseline (M0), 3 months (M3) and 6 months (M6): fatigue and pain were evaluated by auto questionnaires, biometric measures by diagnostic scale, and physical capacities by objective tests.
Results are available for 114 cancer patients at M3 and for 74 patients at M6. 83% had breast cancer and 21% had metastasis. The mean age was 53 years (range: 30 -70). 92 % complained of fatigue and 72 % of pain before program. 35 patients were overweight and 27 were obese. Fatigue and pain decreased significantly at M3 and M6 (P< 0.05). We found a significant reduction in body fat mass with a stable percentage of lean body mass. PAS allowed a significant improvement in overall fitness (quadriceps endurance, strength of both arms, non-dominant leg balance) and cardiovascular endurance.
These results showed that PAS improves symptom management and physical functioning during treatment. Indeed, the supervised program allowed patients to maintain and/or develop their physical capacity during their training. These results are comforting in our proposal for management in PAS as soon as possible in the treatment course.