Post Treatment Recovery Research gets a lift from Grant Success

Tuesday 23 June 2020

Post Treatment Recovery Research will have better outcomes from a recent grant success. Mater Researcher and University of Queensland Professor Sandie McCarthy received high praise with her recent success in being awarded a Medical Research Future Fund (MRFF) Rare Cancers, Rare Diseases and Unmet Need (RCRDUN) grant.

Her work, EnhAnCing treatment oUtcoMes after gynaEcological caNcer (ACUMEN): Using exercise to promote health after cancer therapy, aims to understand how exercise can affect long term success of post-chemotherapy patients.

“There are relatively few trials of exercise after reproductive cancer treatment. This is the first adequately powered randomised controlled trial of exercise in Australian women previously treated for reproductive cancer, that specifically aims to enhance quality of life by facilitating a lifetime of post-treatment exercise,” said Professor McCarthy

Often we focus primarily on a patient’s treatment and lose sight of the post treatment outcomes. This can lead to many women left with the detrimental effects of reproductive cancer treatments on their physical and mental health. With quality of life uniquely the focus of this study—a new breed of research which is non-clinical focused—will rely on fact finding and onus of the patient to help with tailor made programs.

“It’s a quality of life research which focuses uniquely on how exercise helps cancer patients get more successful results, every time after their chemotherapy,” said Mater Research Associate Investigator Professor Lew Perrin. “We will work to assist each participant with her co-designed recovery goals, to focus on the improved physical and mental health outcomes.”

Its grants like these that motivate and create opportunities to highlight all other gynaecological cancers, not just ovarian cancer.

With cancer treatment often leaving women with physical and psychological side effects and a heightened risk of chronic conditions such as diabetes, obesity, osteoporosis, heart conditions and more can profoundly undermine a women’s quality of life and personal outlook.

“With over 6500 Australian women diagnosed with cancers of the cervix, fallopian tubes, ovary, placenta, uterus (endometrium), vagina and vulva (known as reproductive or gynaecological cancers) in 2019, it is our hope that positive outcomes will be achieved with the introduction of exercise to a cancer patient’s treatment plan,” said Professor McCarthy.

“That why grants like these help us to help women recovering from cancer and learn how we can all do better for future patient’s treatments.”

The MRFF RCRDUN grant awards Professor McCarthy’s research $2.2 million over a three year period, commencing this year.

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