Health> Vol.5 No.5, May 2013

Physical activity engagement after breast cancer: Advancing the health of survivors

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ABSTRACT

Background: Physical inactivity is identified as the fourth leading risk factor for global mortality and associated with increased breast cancer diagnosis and risks of recurrence. Objectives: To investigate the level of physical activity engagement after breast cancer in survivors and healthy controls. Design: A descriptive casecontrol study on survivors and matched (ethnic, gender, age) healthy controls was surveyed using a pre-post questionnaire and a 1-minute cancer control media. The socio- and medical demographic data, physical activity status information were obtained from self report questionnaires. Results: Breast cancer survivors (n = 51) were found to participate in low-moderate level of physical activity while healthy controls (n = 45) participated in moderate-vigorous level of physical activity. Healthy adults reported more barriers and excuses but all participants (90% survivors and control) were unaware of the strong inverse relationship between level of physical activity and risks of cancer recurrence. The post test on video showed an increased awareness and intention to re-engagement in physical activity for cancer control (M = 7.1 ± 1.53, p < 0.01). Conclusion: The finding suggests that simple public health message within the Model of cancer survivorship care must be disseminated. The “teachable moments” after a cancer diagnosis should be optimised to promote rehabilitation for physically active lifestyle.

Cite this paper

Loh, S. , Chew, S. and Quek, K. (2013) Physical activity engagement after breast cancer: Advancing the health of survivors. Health, 5, 838-846. doi: 10.4236/health.2013.55111.

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