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28Nov 2017

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Thesis Defense Hanna van Waart

20171128 Hanna van Waart

The exercise program OnTrack is feasible, effective and cost-effective for patients with early stage breast cancer undergoing chemotherapy. Onco-Move is a viable alternative for patients unwilling or unable to follow the intensive OnTrack program. "These programs are ready to be implemented in daily clinical practice," states Hanna van Waart, based on her PhD research. She will defend her thesis on November 30th at the University of Amsterdam.

More and more patients survive cancer, thanks to improved treatments and earlier and better diagnosis. However, during and even long after treatment patients can experience a wide range of side effects as a result of the disease and its treatment. These include fatigue and reduced physical fitness.

Van Waart studied the (cost)effectiveness of the exercise programs Onco-Move (a home-based, low-intensity physical activity program) and OnTrack (a supervised, moderate-to-high intensity exercise program) in patients undergoing adjuvant chemotherapy. Patients with early stage breast cancer in both Onco-Move and OnTrack had less decline in cardiorespiratory fitness, better physical functioning, and experienced less nausea, vomiting and pain compared with usual care. A smaller percentage of patients in OnTrack required chemotherapy dose adjustments than those in the usual care or Onco-Move groups. Both intervention groups returned earlier, and for more hours per week, to work than the control group.

OnTrack is the more effective of the two interventions. Onco-Move represents a viable alternative for women who are unable or unwilling to follow the higher intensity program. Van Waart recommends the programs be implemented in clinical practice.

Details of the defense
Hanna van Waart will defend her thesis on Thursday November 30th, at 12.00. Location: Agnietenkapel, Oudezijds Voorburgwal 229 - 231, Amsterdam. The title of her thesis is: Physical Exercise during Adjuvant Chemotherapy. Promotors: Neil Aaronson and Wim van Harten (Netherlands Cancer Institute). Copromotors: Martijn Stuiver and Gabe Sonke (Netherlands Cancer Institute).

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