Physical activity allows one to lead a healthy lifestyle. For cancer patients, the impact of exercise on treatment side effects and recurrence risk is invaluable. Research has shown that regular physical activity has Positive Impact Of Breast Cancer Exercise. Exercise with its ability to control hormone levels in the body is effective in lowering the risk of estrogen-positive Breast Cancer.
Aside from prevention, physical activity is helpful in curbing cancer treatment, side effects like Fatigue in Breast Cancer patients. However, above all the physiological benefits comes the sense of control that patients regain when they start exercising. Unlike the common misconceptions, you do not need a gym membership or fancy equipment to be active. You can remain physically active through the simplest of everyday activities like light walking and jogging.
Let’s understand the study of Hartman, who tested the effectiveness of a 3-month social cognitive theory, based on sedentary women with a family history of Breast Cancer. The curriculum was adapted from a physical activity intervention and included an internet-based program with brief telephone consultation for the environment and discussion of customized goals. Participants with Breast Cancer symptoms were encouraged to work most days of the week with up to 45 to 60 minutes of moderate-intensity physical activity. Participants (n=56) had an average age of 42.6 years.
Differences were maintained at 5 months, 2 months after termination of the intervention. Hartman suggested that the benefit of physical fitness after the intervention was a result of improving self-efficacy. During the research, the woman led a more active lifestyle and had a lower chance of showcasing Breast Cancer symptoms.
Role of Exercise When Diagnosed With Breast Cancer
Various studies have investigated the role of exercise after Breast Cancer symptoms are diagnosed, showing improvement in perioperative outcomes, side effects of treatment, quality of life, and overall survival.
In 2016, a Cochrane Review was conducted to assess the effect of aerobic or resistance interventions on the side effects of Chemotherapy and Radiotherapy for Breast Cancer. The review concluded that physical exercise during adjuvant Treatment for Breast Cancer increases physical fitness and decreases Fatigue.
A second 2017 Cochrane Review focused on the role of Yoga in improving quality of life, mental health, and highlighted the cancer symptoms in women with a Breast Cancer diagnosis, which included a total of 2166 participants in 24 randomized controlled trials. Research of moderate quality endorsed Yoga as an effective measure in improving quality of life, decreasing exhaustion, and reducing Sleep Disturbances.
Another side effect of Breast Cancer that can be treated by exercising is lymphedema. Breast cancer-related lymphedema is an accumulation of fluid in the interstitial tissues of the arm, head, neck, or torso. It is caused by lymph node damage during Breast Cancer Treatment which involves Radiotherapy and axillary node dissection.
Regular exercising after Breast Cancer treatment
Exercises help to reduce the side effects of Cancer Treatment and help you get back to your usual activities. After going through Radiotherapy for breast cancer, it is essential to develop a regular habit of doing exercises to preserve arm and shoulder mobility.
Three Common Breast Cancer Exercises You Can Perform:
This exercise helps to boost your ability to move your shoulders forward. In this exercise, you’ll need a broom handle, yardstick, or another stick-like item to use as the wand. You can do this exercise in a bed or on the floor.
- Hold the wand in both hands over the chest, with the palms facing up.
- Lift the wand over your head to the extent possible.
- Use your uninfected arm to raise the wand until you feel your affected arm stretch.
- Hold on for five seconds.
- Arms down and repeat 5 to 7 times.
This exercise helps to increase your chest and shoulder frontal movement. It may take several weeks before your elbows get near the bed or floor.
- With your elbows pointing to the ceiling, clasp your hands behind your neck
- Move your elbows to the bed or floor, apart and down.
- Replay 5-7 times.
3.Shoulder Blade Squeeze
This exercise also helps to increase the movement of shoulder blades and to improve posture.
- Sit in a chair facing the mirror.
- Blend your elbows.
- Squeeze your shoulder blades together and bring the elbows to your back behind you. Elbows move with you, but don’t use your elbows to push the motion. Keep level with your shoulders, as you do. Don’t raise your shoulders to your ears.
- Go back to the starting position and repeat 5 to 7 times.
Exercise is essential to boost aerobic (heart-lung) capacity for women who are diagnosed with Breast Cancer symptoms. Exercise also lowers the risk of returning to different types of cancer.