Wednesday 28 September 2016

Exercise is a 'medicine'

Published 05/01/2016 | 02:30

Exercise is a form of medicine.
Exercise is a form of medicine.

Irish patients are to take part in a pioneering global clinical trial looking at how effective exercise is in reducing symptoms and prolonging life for advanced prostate cancer sufferers.

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Called GAP4, it is funded by the Movember Foundation and involves over 30 expert clinicians and researchers from Ireland, USA, Australia, Netherlands, Canada and the UK.

It is recrutiting 866 men from seven different countries for a trial that will take five-and-a-half years to complete.

Dr Stephen Finn, associate professor in histopathology at Trinity College, Dublin said: "Evidence continues to accumulate that exercise is a medicine and has dramatic effects in relation to cancer prevention, as treatment, and preventing cancer from recurring.

"The Movember GAP4 project is a unique opportunity to prove that exercise acting as a medicine delays prostate cancer progression and improves survival in men with prostate cancer."

Professor in physiotherapy, Dr Juliette Hussey, added: "Prostate is the second most common cancer (after lung) among men worldwide. While current treatments for advanced prostate cancer extend life, many of these also incur side effects such as fatigue, metabolic and cardiac changes.

"There is promising data obtained from observational studies and pilot work in this area on how exercise can improve patient outcomes."

Previous research has demonstrated that men engaging in vigorous exercise at diagnosis may significantly reduce their risk of progressing to fatal prostate cancer.

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