(Mirror Daily, United States) – A team of researchers in the United Kingdom have started observing if exercise could be beneficial against prostate cancer through human trial. After 8 years, they are ready to test out this new type of intervention. It could be potentially an excellent addition to prostate cancer treatment in some patients.
In the U.K., prostate cancer is the most common type, with 43,400 new cases diagnosed each year. While it’s usually a slowly progressive variant of cancer, it still claims around 10,800 lives each year. Some, however, are far more aggressive that display a much more rapid pace of growth. The researchers have thus made it their number one target.
The study which is led by a team from Sheffield Hallam Univesity will be monitoring the disease progression in 50 men who have been diagnosed with prostate cancer. The patients have not seen to a spread of the potentially fatal illness yet, and will be separated into two groups.
Half of them will be undergoing 2.5 hours of exercise per week for an entire year. Initially, it will be with a professional trainer, and then they will receive free access to local gyms. The second group of men will be given information on the benefits of exercise for those diagnosed with prostate cancer. However, they will not have a trainer at their side.
At the end of the study, researchers hope to gain knowledge on whether exercise could be a new NHS treatment for prostate cancer. It could be an exceptional alternative to surgery or radiotherapy, both of which present with risks. Most men opt for active surveillance, which means regular testing to see the cancer’s progression. All participants will benefit from close monitoring.
According to lead author of the study, Dr. Liam Bourke, it could be a major leap forward for treatment if they prove that exercise works against prostate cancer. It will naturally be beneficial for the health of the patients overall, but it could also aid against the disease.
At least one patient who has tested the method has been losing weight and found to have lower PSA levels. PSA is naturally produced by both normal and cancerous cells, but high levels might indicate the presence of cancer. With decreased amounts, it might be a sign of the cancer slowing down.
According prostate cancer expert, Malcom Mason, closely monitoring the patients who regularly exercise will hopefully provide positive results. They are under no other treatment, so it could decisively be proven if exercise is a viable way of fighting prostate cancer.
Image source: huffpost.com
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