Proactive Approach; Survey Reveals a Quarter of Breast Cancer Patients Unaware That Lifestyle Factors like Exercise Can Significantly Reduce Chance of Recurrance

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ONE in four women who have had breast cancer are not aware lifestyle changes may significantly reduce the risk of breast cancer recurrence, according to a survey conducted by Cancer Australia of women in Australia diagnosed with breast cancer.

Cancer Australia CEO Professor Helen Zorbas said, C[pounds sterling]Despite survival rates continually improving in Australia, we continue to hear the most common concern for women following treatment for breast cancer is uncertainty about the future and fear of a recurrence.

C[pounds sterling]The evidence suggests lifestyle factors such as moderate levels of physical activity can reduce the risk of recurrence of breast cancer by 24% and reduce the risk of death by more than one third compared with inactive women.

C[pounds sterling]This means for women who feel well enough, undertaking as little as three hours of physical activity such as brisk walking or cycling each week could help them stay healthy.C[yen]

The survey, conducted through consumer organisation Breast Cancer Network Australia, also showed that women were actively seeking information about ways to stay well after breast cancer from multiple sources.

Additionally, the survey results showed that almost half of women who were aware of these lifestyle actions were not given information about this by any of their health professionals.

C[pounds sterling]Research is ongoing to better understand the modifiable factors which influence recurrence of breast cancer,C[yen] Professor Zorbas said.

C[pounds sterling]Given women's concerns and the impact of exercise on recurrence, evidence-based advice around these lifestyle changes should become an integral part of the follow-up care provided to women. …