University Post
University of Copenhagen
Independent of management


Copenhagen cancer patients now do hard work outs

After recent University of Copenhagen research, cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy can now take part in an intensive exercise program

Following positive research results, all cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy in Copenhagen are now able to take a programme that improves muscular strength, physical function and aerobic capacity – and reduces fatigue.

This is according to clinical health professor Lis Adamsen of the Department of Public Health at University of Copenhagen who talked to the University Post.

Lots of research has gone into this area in the past, but Adamsen and her colleague’s program is the first of its kind to take on people with many types of cancer. Where previous exercise programs have focussed entirely on women with breast cancer, they took on patients with twenty-four different diagnoses.

»We are the first to make significant progress in terms of fatigue ever,« Lis Adamsen says, »there are no previous projects in this field that have found that you could alter fatigue.«

Many firsts

The programme is the first to take on cancer patients with serious prognoses. The positive results have therefore been somewhat surprising.

»All previous research has only taken on patients with positive prognoses – half of our patients had widespread cancer in their bodies,« says Adamsen.

»To put it in popular terms, we had the worst cases, but with the most positive results.«

International interest and approval

The results have been so positive that it will continue with the same funding as it did when it was just a project. Now it will be permanent, allowing cancer patients in the Copenhagen area to take part in the programme.

»It is always wonderful when something good comes out of research,« says Adamsen.

It has been an exciting time for her and her team – their results have been published in the British Medical Journal and have generated international interest, she adds.

Read the study ‘Effect of a multimodal high intensity exercise intervention in cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy: randomised controlled trial’ here.