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Increasing physical activity among older adults with gynecologic cancers: a qualitative study.

PURPOSE: The purpose of this study was to gain an understanding of older gynecologic cancer patients' preferences and opinions related to physical activity during chemotherapy, including interventions to promote physical activity.

METHODS: Gynecologic cancer patients 60 years or older receiving chemotherapy at a single institution within the last 12 months completed questionnaires and a semi-structured interview asking about their preferences for physical activity interventions aimed at promoting physical activity while receiving treatment.

RESULTS: Among the 30 gynecologic cancer patients surveyed and interviewed, a majority agreed with the potential usefulness of a physical activity intervention during chemotherapy (67%) and most reported they would be willing to use an activity tracker during chemotherapy (73%). They expressed a preference for an aerobic activity intervention such as walking, indicated a desire for education from their clinical team on the effects physical activity can have on treatment symptoms, and stated a need for an intervention that could be accessed from anywhere and anytime. Additionally, they emphasized a need for an intervention that considered their treatment symptoms as these were a significant barrier to physical activity while on chemotherapy.

CONCLUSION: In this study of older gynecologic cancer patients receiving chemotherapy, most were open to participating in a virtually accessible and symptom-tailored physical activity intervention to promote physical activity during chemotherapy.

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