Author(s): Kerry S Courneya, Melanie R Keats, Robert Turner
Preliminary evidence indicates that physical exercise may be an effective strategy for the rehabilitation of cancer patients following high dose chemotherapy (HDC) and bone marrow transplantation (BMT), but the focus of this research has been on physical fitness and medical outcomes. In the present study, we employed a prospective design to examine the relationship between physical exercise and various quality of life (QOL) indices in 25 BMT patients. Participants completed weekly self-administered questionnaires upon being admitted to hospital, and monitored the frequency and duration of their exercise during hospitalization. Statistical analyses indicated that exercise during hospitalization was significantly correlated with almost all QOL indices, including physical well-being, psychological well-being, depression, anxiety and days hospitalized. Moreover, only some of the correlations were attenuated after controlling for relevant demographic and medical variables. It was concluded that physical exercise may be related to QOL in BMT patients, but that experimental research is needed before any definitive conclusions can be drawn.