A-CaRe project 1: Effectiveness of exercise after chemotherapy on physical fitness, fatigue and quality of life: a randomized controlled trial (Kampshoff)

Background

Starting date: 27/10/2010
Cancer treatment has made substantial progress in the last decades. Survival rates after cancer treatment have improved up to 56% in male and 62% in female patients. This is a major achievement; it is, however, important to acknowledge that cancer and cancer treatment are associated with long-term physical and psychosocial side effects. These sequelae include decreased muscle strength, reduced cardiorespiratory fitness, reduced lean body mass, bone loss, severe feelings of fatigue, depression, emotional distress, anxiety and decreased self-esteem. Fatigue is one of the most common side effects of cancer treatment, affecting approximately 70% of the cancer population receiving radiation therapy and chemotherapy. Even years after treatment, feelings of fatigue persist in 30% of cancer patients. This has great impact on the patient’s quality of life.
Preliminary studies suggest that physical exercise interventions can improve physical fitness, fatigue and quality of life in cancer patients after completion of chemotherapy. Additional research is needed to rigorously test the effects of exercise programmes among cancer patients and to determine optimal training intensity, accordingly.
 
The REACT study is a randomised controlled trial (RCT) evaluating the effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of a high intensity exercise programme compared to a low-to-moderate intensity exercise programme and a waiting list control group on physical fitness and fatigue as primary outcomes.