Feasibility of presurgical exercise in men with prostate cancer undergoing prostatectomy

Favil Singh, Robert U. Newton, Michael K. Baker, Nigel A. Spry, Dennis R. Taaffe, Jeffery Thavaseelan, Daniel A. Galvão

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

21 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Prostatectomy is associated with short- and long-term morbidity, which includes attenuation of muscle function and deterioration of lean body mass. Physical function is a known predictor of morbidity and mortality, with initial evidence indicating that presurgical exercise is associated with fewer postsurgical complications and shorter hospitalization. The aim was to determine the feasibility of a supervised presurgical exercise program for prostate cancer (PCa) patients scheduled for prostatectomy. Methods: Ten men (68+6.4 years old) with localized PCa undertook a 6-week resistance and aerobic exercise program prior surgery. Training was undertaken twice weekly and patients were assessed at baseline, presurgery, and 6 weeks postsurgery. Outcome measures included muscle and physical performance, body composition, urinary incontinence and questionnaire. Results: Muscle strength increased by 7.5% to 24.3% (P <.05) from baseline to presurgery but decreased to pretraining levels postsurgery, except for knee extensor strength (P =.247). There were significant improvements (P <.05) in the 6-m fast walk (9.3%), 400-m walk (7.4%), and chair rise (12.3%) at presurgery. Following surgery, improvements in physical performance were maintained. There was no change in lean or fat mass prior to surgery, but lean mass declined by 2.7 kg (P =.014) following surgery. There were no adverse effects from the exercise program. Conclusions: Exercise undertaken prior to prostatectomy improved muscle and physical performance, with functional benefits maintained 6 weeks postsurgery. Presurgical exercise for PCa patients has the potential to facilitate recovery by improving physical reserve capacity, especially in men with poor muscle nd physical performance.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)290-299
Number of pages10
JournalIntegrative Cancer Therapies
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sep 2017


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