An investigation into exercise behaviour, preferences and quality of life of primary brain tumour patients
Brain tumors are the second leading cause of cancer deaths in young adults ages 20-39. According to the South African Medical Research Council, there was an estimated 801 deaths from brain cancer in South Africa in 2000. Primary and metastatic tumors are a significant cause of morbidity and mortality in cancer patients worldwide. The purpose of this study was to further the knowledge and expertise on exercise as an adjuvant therapy in brain tumor patients to improve quality of life (QoL). A sample of 14 brain tumor patients in various stages of the illness was recruited. Based on the objectives of this study, an Exercise and Quality of Life questionnaire (Fact-Br) was compiled. It contains 53 questions with high validity and good psychometric properties and efficacy to assess QoL in patients in the population. The main objective of the study was to find a correlation of QoL and physical activity. A positive correlation was evident, which indicated that physical activity would improve the QoL of the brain tumor patient. There was a statistically significant difference between patients who participated in exercise before diagnoses and those who did not in terms of perceptions of QoL (p=0.034). In the survey it showed that 59-71% patients engaged in mild to moderate exercise. There is a considerable rationale for promoting multimodal exercise interventions to improve physical capacity, vitality, and physical and mental well-being and to relieve fatigue during chemotherapy, thereby supporting cancer patients’ daily activities.
Keywords: Brain tumor, quality of life (QoL), exercise intervention, FACT-Br, well-being.