Asian Nurs Res.  2013 Sep;7(3):149-159.

Systematic Review of Exercise Effects on Health Outcomes in Women with Breast Cancer

Affiliations
  • 1College of Nursing, Research Institute of Nursing Science, Seoul National University, Seoul, South Korea.
  • 2Health Technology Assessment Division, National Evidence-based Healthcare Collaborating Agency, Seoul, South Korea. sunarea68@neca.re.kr
  • 3College of Nursing, Seoul National University, Seoul, South Korea.

Abstract

PURPOSE
Exercise is commonly recommended to women after breast cancer surgery, yet it is difficult for patients and health professionals to adopt safe and beneficial types and modes of exercise. Thus studies on exercise interventions targeting women with breast cancer treatment were systematically reviewed.
METHODS
The review process and quality assessment of the studies followed the guideline of the National Evidence-based Healthcare Collaborating Agency. Relevant studies were obtained from electronic databases, and two trained reviewers independently analyzed the studies. Of the 902 articles sorted, 11 were selected. Then, quality assessment for each study was carried out with the Scottish Intercollegiate Guideline Network (SIGN) checklist.
RESULTS
Seven different types of exercise interventions were identified from 3 quasi-experimental and 8 randomized controlled trial studies. The interventions varied in duration from several days to 13 weeks, and tended to show significant effects on psychological outcomes and upper body functions within a short-term period and were effective in alleviating lymphedema at a longer 1-year point. Supervised, professional intervention had significant effects on health indicators and a higher adherence rate.
CONCLUSION
Well-designed exercises are effective and beneficial for improving women's physical, physiological, and psychological health outcomes after breast cancer treatment as well as to facilitate changes in exercise behaviors. The feasibility of applying intervention protocols, efficiency of interventions, and strengths of exercise protocols should be further examined.

Keyword

breast cancer; exercise; intervention; systematic review

MeSH Terms

Breast Neoplasms*
Breast*
Delivery of Health Care
Exercise
Female
General Surgery
Health Occupations
Humans
Lymphedema
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