AACR: Regular Pre-Diagnosis Exercise Ups Prostate Cancer Survival

Why exercise improves prostate cancer outcomes
Why exercise improves prostate cancer outcomes

(HealthDay News) -- A moderate or intense exercise regimen may improve a man's odds of surviving prostate cancer, according to research presented at the annual meeting of the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR), held from April 16 to 20 in New Orleans.

The American Cancer Society study included 10,067 men, aged 50 to 93, who were diagnosed between 1992 and 2011 with localized prostate cancer. The men provided researchers with information about their physical activity before and after their diagnosis.

Men with the highest levels of exercise before their diagnosis were 30 percent less likely to die of their prostate cancer than those who exercised the least, according to a team led by Ying Wang, Ph.D., senior epidemiologist at the cancer society's epidemiology research program. Men with the highest levels of exercise after diagnosis were 34 percent less likely to die of prostate cancer than those who did the least exercise. The researchers also found that walking for four to six hours a week before diagnosis was also associated with a one-third lower risk of death from prostate cancer. But timing was key, since walking after a diagnosis was not associated with a statistically significant lower risk of death.

"The American Cancer Society recommends adults engage in a minimum of 150 minutes of moderate or 75 minutes of vigorous physical activity per week," Wang said in an AACR news release, and "these results indicate that following these guidelines might be associated with better prognosis."

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