Women over age 18 who are underinsured or uninsured are
encouraged to register for a clinical breast exam and pap
smear provided by Cooley Dickinson-affiliated physicians,
certified nurse midwives, and nurse practitioners.
The free Breast Cancer and Cervical Cancer
Screening Clinic will be held Tuesday, Oct. 14,
from 5:30-7:30 pm.
Space is limited; to regisger, call 888-554-4CDH (4234).
The location of the clinic will be provided when you register
An apple a day may keep the doctor away, but will exercise reduce your risk of developing breast cancer? Researchers suggest routine exercise could reduce a woman’s risk of developing breast cancer, and the more often you exercise the better.
An analysis across 73 studies showed a 25 percent risk reduction of breast cancer occurrence among exercising women versus those who were inactive; the study was published in the journal Recent Results in Cancer Research, (2011, 188:125-39).
“Often, we think of exercise as optional, but, in fact, it should be part of our daily routine and given the same importance we give to eating, sleeping, and bathing,” said Lidia Schapira, MD, medical oncologist, Center for Breast Cancer, Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center.
The longer a woman exercises regularly throughout her life, “the greater the benefit,” noted Lindsay Rockwell, DO,
medical oncologist, Cooley Dickinson Hospital. “Also, more vigorous exercise was shown to be of significant benefit.”
Dose Exercise to Move More
Physical activity is anything that gets your body moving and requires more energy than resting, according to the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute.
“If we think of exercise as a powerful intervention, we should consider ‘dosing’ it properly, just as we dose a medication,” suggested Schapira.
| Lidia Schapira, MD
Current recommendations are to work out at least 30 minutes a day, five days a week. Schapira recommends walking vigorously, biking, or running for at least 30 minutes and considering other forms of exercise, such as yoga and Pilates, to increase flexibility, strength, and balance.
“A combined routine, with some vigorous aerobic activity and disciplined yoga practice, is ideal.”
It is important that any exercise program for women living with breast cancer be discussed with a woman’s oncologist, noted Rockwell, who suggests “consulting with a physical therapist or certified personal trainer in order to establish a baseline function, especially for women who have not exercised regularly in the past.”
Bring on the Benefits
For women diagnosed with breast cancer, there are enormous benefits to exercise: it can help reduce the risk of a cancer recurrence and will undoubtedly help a woman feel better. Rockwell cites improvements in a woman’s energy and fitness levels and cardiovascular capacity, decreased anxiety and depression, improved sense of body image, and increased self-esteem.
Schapira said, “There have been good studies that show that exercise, during radiation for example, helps reduce fatigue. Others have shown a change in the levels of hormones in the blood. These all point in the same direction: that exercise is beneficial.”
Cooley Dickinson is working with the Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center to create the Mass General Cancer Center at Cooley Dickinson Hospital.