Improving health and health related quality of life

A large number of people live with the physical and psychosocial consequences of cancer and its treatment. For example, fatigue and low physical fitness may affect a patient’s health related quality of life by limiting a patient’s ability to perform daily activities. There is an increasing amount of scientific literature describing positive effects of exercise or nutritional interventions on various health outcomes for patients with cancer and cancer survivors. Our team participates in multiple studies investigating the effectiveness of exercise or nutritional interventions in understudied patient groups, such as patients with advanced breast cancer. When effective, we support implementation of successful interventions into usual care.

Our research focuses on multiple phases after cancer diagnosis; during, after and even before cancer treatment. Recently, tailored multimodal prehabilitation programs that comprises an exercise and nutritional intervention for patients with cancer received increased attention. In patients with colon cancer, a prehabilitation program has proven to be effective in patients with colon cancer prior to surgery. We study the effectiveness of a multimodal prehabilitation program preceding radical cystectomy in patients with bladder cancer.

In order to improve the quality of care, we investigate more sustainable follow-up care models and we recently collaborated in the development of guideline recommendations for physical therapy guided exercise programs for people living with or beyond cancer.

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