Examining a therapeutic yoga program for prostate cancer survivors - Abstract

BACKGROUND: In the earlier stages of prostate cancer, effective treatments have created a need for research to focus on practices that may improve quality of life throughout survivorship.

Physical activity is a significant supportive care management strategy for prostate cancer survivors, though the optimal modality is not yet understood.

HYPOTHESES: The authors hypothesized that yoga would be a feasible physical activity option for prostate cancer survivors and their support persons and that the incorporation of social support would increase physical activity adherence.

METHODS: This 14-week feasibility study involved a 7-week class-based yoga program (adherence phase), followed by 7 weeks of self-selected physical activity (maintenance phase). Demographic information, physical activity behavior, quality of life, fatigue, stress, mood, and fitness variables were assessed at 3 time points. Prostate cancer survivors' perceived social support was rated during yoga and after yoga.

RESULTS: Class attendance was 6.1 and 5.8 for prostate cancer survivors (n = 15) and their support persons (n = 10), respectively, for the 7 classes. Levels of perceived social support were higher for those who brought a support person. Significant improvements with regard to stress, fatigue, and mood before and after yoga class (all Ps < .05) were reported by all participants. No clinically significant changes were noted on prostate cancer survivor's quality of life or fatigue over the course of the 14-week study.

CONCLUSIONS: Yoga is a feasible physical activity option for prostate cancer survivors. The program had a promising uptake rate, high program adherence rate, and there were acute program benefits with regard to stress, fatigue, and mood for all participants. Future examination is warranted with regard to chronic benefits and group cohesion influences on levels of perceived social support.

Written by:
Ross Zahavich AN, Robinson JA, Paskevich D, Culos-Reed SN.   Are you the author?
University of Calgary, Calgary, Alberta, Canada.

Reference: Integr Cancer Ther. 2012 Jun 27. Epub ahead of print.
doi: 10.1177/1534735412446862

PubMed Abstract
PMID: 22740082

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