Exercise might be used as an anti-cancer therapy

Exercise might be used as an anti-cancer therapy


A study to record the effects of intense exercise on people with prostate cancer is being conducted in an international clinical trial. One of the researchers, Dr.Fred Saad, urologist-oncologist University of Montreal Hospital Research Centre (CRCHUM) says that exercise can have a healing effect on cancer as much as drugs even in patients in advanced stages of prostate cancer.

Dr. Fred Saad, along with Robert Newton, a professor at the Edith Cowan University Exercise Medicine Research Institute in Australia, is conducting an International study, which focuses on the health benefits of exercise in people with metastatic cancer.

With the progression of the disease, patients tend to become sedentary, which contributes to the worsening of the condition. Researchers have found that exercise can literally prolong a person’s lifespan by a few years with prostate cancer.

Patients at the advanced stage are expected to live 2-3 years more and the researchers have been trying to decrease the mortality by 22% at least, which means the patients will be able to live about six months longer. This is equivalent to the effects of new medicines. Therefore, Dr. Saad concluded that exercise could be regarded as a powerful supplement to drugs and treatments.

The study has already begun in Australia and Ireland. Within a few weeks about 60 hospitals all over the world will be involved in the study, recruiting 900 men in advanced stages of prostate cancer.

Saad confirmed that all the participants will be treated with advanced medical instruments and methods. Exercise will be implemented as a treatment along with standard procedures.

A specialist will supervise the patients in the ‘exercise group’ for 12 months. Cardiovascular and strength training program along with resistance training and aerobics thrice a week have been put on their plan of treatment.

The result will be analyzed in terms of improvement in life, tolerance of the treatment and appetite in connection to their physical condition.

The researchers have hypothesized that exercise has a clear connection to the progression of the disease and leads to an extension of lifespan while aiding patients to tolerate therapy treatments in a better way.

Dr. Saad is prepared to present his research on the third phase of the clinical experiment at the annual conference of the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) from June 3rd to 7th in Chicago.