According to findings published online early in the Journal of Clinical Oncology, researchers from the Perelman School of Medicine at University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia have found that slowly progressive weight lifting compared with standard of care reduced the incidence of physical function deterioration among breast cancer survivors.
For the single-blind, 12-month, controlled trial, researchers enrolled 295 survivors of nonmetastatic breast cancer and randomly assigned them to twice-per-week slowly progressive weight lifting or standard of care.
Results showed that 16.3% of those in the control group experienced incident physical function deterioration after 12 months compared with 8.1% in the weight lifting group (P = 0.04). Researchers did not observe any serious or unexpected adverse events related to weight lifting.
The researchers note that future studies should compare efficacy of weight lifting with other exercises, such as brisk walking, in order to develop a confirmatory study aimed at identifying the best approach to preserving physical function among breast cancer survivors.
Breast cancer survivors may experience physical function deterioration, which may lead to bone fracture, disability, injurious falls, and premature death.
Slowly progressive weight lifting compared with standard care reduced the incidence of physical function deterioration among survivors of breast cancer.