Early initiated postoperative rehabilitation enhances quality of life in patients with operable lung cancer: Secondary outcomes from a randomized trial

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Introduction: Patients with lung cancer report a lower degree of Health Related Quality of Life (HRQoL) compared with other cancer patients. HRQoL reflects how patients experience the impact of their disease and its treatment on their quality of daily living. A widely used questionnaire in lung cancer patients is the Functional Assessment of Cancer Therapy - Lung (FACT-L) questionnaire. Here we report the secondary outcomes on FACT-L data from the Postoperative Rehabilitation in Operation for Lung CAncer (PROLUCA) study, which describes the effect of early (14 days) versus late initiated (14 weeks) postoperative rehabilitation.

Materials and methods: The PROLUCA study was designed as a two-armed randomized controlled trial with an early rehabilitation group (14 days after surgery (ERG)) or a control arm with a late rehabilitation group (14 weeks after surgery (LRG)). The results for seven domain scores obtained using the FACT-L at the following time-points: baseline, 14 weeks, 26 weeks and 52 weeks after surgery are presented here.

Results: 119 patients were randomized to the ERG and 116 to the LRG. In the ERG, HRQoL measured by both FACT-L and FACT-G (general core instrument) showed a continuous improvement up to 26 weeks after which HRQoL decreased after further 26 weeks without structured intervention. In the LRG a non-significant deterioration was detected over the first 14 weeks after surgery. After participation in the 12 weeks rehabilitation program, an increase in HRQoL was seen, without reaching the same level as the early group.

Conclusion: Analyses of the seven domain scores obtained using FACT-L and FACT-G reflect the importance of starting exercise early after surgery since the ERG avoid a temporary decrease in HRQoL. It is therefore recommended to start up a structured rehabilitation program 14 days after surgery, containing high intensity interval training and strength exercise twice a week for 12 weeks.

TidsskriftLung Cancer
Sider (fra-til)285-289
Antal sider5
StatusUdgivet - 2020

ID: 245708973