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Nervous System Imbalance May Cause Fatigue in Breast Cancer Survivors
Date:4/14/2011

celerated body-wide aging, causing their systems to function as if they were 20 years older than patients who weren't fatigued.

Jones noted that some of his prior research indicated a similar effect on fitness levels, with breast cancer survivors exhibiting about 30 percent lower levels of cardiovascular fitness as sedentary women of the same age. Chemotherapy is likely to blame, he said.

Both Fagundes and Jones advocated exercise as a way of mitigating cancer-related fatigue and maintaining fitness levels during and after treatment.

"Exercise is probably the best way to restore that balance," Fagundes said. "Obviously the goal is always to attenuate those negative effects."

More information

For more information about cancer-related fatigue, visit the U.S. National Cancer Institute.

SOURCES: Christopher Fagundes, Ph.D., postdoctoral fellow, Institute of Behavioral Medicine Research, Ohio State University, Columbus, Ohio; Lee Jones, Ph.D., scientific director, Duke Cancer Institute Center for Cancer Survivorship, Durham, N.C.; March 9, 2011, Psychoneuroendocrinology, online


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