Ten weeks of home-based exercise attenuates symptoms of chemotherapy-induced peripheral neuropathy in breast cancer patients

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Karen Y. Wonders *
Gabrielle Whisler
Hallie Loy
Brian Holt
Kelsey Bohachek
Robert Wise
(*) Corresponding Author:
Karen Y. Wonders | karen.wonders@wright.edu


The purpose of this investigation was to determine if a structured, home-based exercise program was beneficial to reduce symptoms of chemotherapy-induced peripheral neuropathy and improve quality of life (QOL). A total of 50 women who are breast cancer survivors and are listed in the Breast Cancer Registry of Greater Cincinnati database were recruited by mail. Participants were initially asked to complete the McGill QOL questionnaire and the Leeds Assessment of Neuropathic Symptoms and Signs, before beginning a 10-week home-based exercise program. At the completion of the exercise program, subjects were asked again to complete the same two questionnaires. Pre- and post-intervention data were analyzed using a repeated measures ANOVA, at a significance level of α<0.05. Six individuals completed the investigation. Prior to the 10-week exercise program, participants described their pain as unpleasant skin sensations (Pre-HBEx, N=6), abnormally sensitive to touch (Pre-HBEx, N=6), and coming on suddenly in bursts for no apparent reason (Pre-HBEx, N=5). Following 10-weeks of exercise, participants reported experiencing less of these symptoms (Post- HBEx, N=3, 1, and 4 respectively; P=0.05). It was also determined that troublesome symp- toms were significantly reduced after 10- weeks of home-based exercise (P=0.05).

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