Efficacy of walking exercise in promoting cognitive-psychosocial functions in men with prostate cancer receiving androgen deprivation therapy

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Lee, C E
Kilgour, Andrea
Lau, YK J
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Abstract Background Prostate cancer is the most commonly diagnosed non-melanoma cancer among men. Androgen deprivation therapy (ADT) has been the core therapy for men with advanced prostate cancer. It is only in recent years that clinicians began to recognize the cognitive-psychosocial side effects from ADT, which significantly compromise the quality of life of prostate cancer survivors. The objectives of the study are to determine the efficacy of a simple and accessible home-based, walking exercise program in promoting cognitive and psychosocial functions of men with prostate cancer receiving ADT. Methods A 6-month prospective, single-blinded, randomized controlled trial will be conducted to compare the Exercise Group with the Control Group. Twenty men with prostate cancer starting ADT will be recruited and randomly assigned to one of the two groups: the Exercise Group will receive instructions in setting up an individualized 6-month home-based, walking exercise program, while the Control Group will receive standard medical advice from the attending physician. The primary outcomes will be psychosocial and cognitive functions. Cognitive functions including memory, attention, working memory, and executive function will be assessed using a battery of neurocognitive tests at baseline and 6 months. Psychosocial functions including depression, anxiety and self-esteem will be assessed at baseline, 3 and 6 months using the Center for Epidemiological Studies Depression Scale, Spielberger State-Trait Anxiety Inventory, and Rosenberg Self-Esteem Scale. Discussion The significance of the cognitive-psychosocial side effects of ADT in men with prostate cancer has only been recently recognized, and the management remains unclear. This study addresses this issue by designing a simple and accessible home-based, exercise program that may potentially have significant impact on reducing the cognitive and psychosocial side effects of ADT, and ultimately improving the health-related quality of life in men with prostate cancer receiving ADT. Trial registration NCT00856102
BMC Cancer. 2012 Jul 30;12(1):324