Paper in Psycho-Oncology
  • Beesley, V.L., Price, M.A., Butow, P.N., Green, A.C., Olsen, C.M., Australian Ovarian Cancer Study Group, Australian Ovarian Cancer Study — Quality of Life Study Investigators and Webb, P.M. Physical activity in women with ovarian cancer and its association with decreased distress and improved quality of life. Psycho-Oncology, 20: 1161–1169.

    Objectives: To document levels of and changes in physical activity before and after ovarian cancer diagnosis and explore associations with psychosocial outcomes.

    Methods: Of 1207 eligible Australian Ovarian Cancer Study (AOCS) participants, 798 participated in an additional prospective Quality of Life (QoL) Study which measured anxiety, depression and QoL at 3–6 monthly intervals for 2 years beginning 3–48 months after diagnosis. AOCS asked about physical activity before diagnosis and 530 women also completed a one-off lifestyle questionnaire 7–64 months after diagnosis which assessed activity during their first and, if relevant, second-to-third and fourth-to-sixth years following diagnosis. Analysis of variance was used to relate physical activity to psychosocial outcomes.

    Results: Almost 40% of women decreased their physical activity in the first year after diagnosis. Approximately 25% still had lower levels after 2–3 and 41years. Recent physical activity level was inversely associated with depression and positively associated with QoL (P
    Conclusions: Many women did not regain their pre-morbid physical activity levels several years after ovarian cancer diagnosis. Low physical activity may simply be a consequence of poor wellbeing but, alternatively, physical activity may improve psychosocial health of this group.