Research Trials

Ladysko Member Posts: 3

I am new to the community - Hi.  I have a question for people who are undergoing dose dense AC and Taxol for triple Negative breast cancer, in relation to how much exercise or movement they are doing.


I was diagnosed in May and have a treatment plan that is slightly altered - I have chemo, then surgery and then radiation.  I have a triple neg invasive carcinoma ( it was 1 cm at diagnosis now 6 mm and shrinking (shrink MOFO SHRINK)) and a 3 cm area of DCIS in one boob.    

I was invited to take part in an exercise research trial.  I am pre menopausal and I was already moderately fit + active.  This trial has required me to walk 8 k steps per day and do weights 3 x a week during chemo.  I am enjoying the golden elixir (chemo) of dose dense AC + Taxol for 20 weeks. Halfway there at 10 weeks done. 

The research trial is looking to establish if i can maintain muscle mass, invoke the sympathetic nervous system, impact of my bone density  and what impact exercise has on treatment and side effects of Chemo.  I was required to lift weights and do a heavy workout post chemo (AC). 


I was wondering how other people on the same chemo treatment are doing in terms of moving and exercising ? Are other people able to maintain prior exercise regimes ?  Have you made it part of your habit.  If there was a trainer or an exercise professional would you be interested in working out post chemo (directly after infusion).  

I can’t swim anymore as I am an ocean swimmer and with a chest infection and neutropenia and low haemoglobin advice from the doctor was hell no.  So i am left with pilates, weights and walking.  


  • Zoffiel
    Zoffiel Member Posts: 3,374
    I've seen some of the reports about exercise immediately after infusion. It sounds really interesting. I was 43 when I had AC and 53 when I had TC. I did my best to keep active throughout both but that wasn't so achievable through my last treatment. AC wasn't too bad, but I was very fit before I started which would have helped. I  was able to keep up my daily walks of 6 km without too many problems but the wheels fell off about a month after I finished TC. Being part of a structured program would probably have made a huge difference from a motivational perspective and I certainly would have had a go straight after treatment as I had no allergic reactions and apart from being a bit vague, rather like being mildly pished, I wasnt unwell on the day.
    16 months post chemo I have regained quite a bit of muscle mass through a self constructed 'redneck rehab' program but I fatigue very quickly. Mxx
  • kmakm
    kmakm Member Posts: 7,974
    edited August 2018
    Hi Ladysko. I was aware of the studies that keeping moving during chemo assisted in reducing side effects so I did. I took almost daily walks for the duration of treatment, starting with a short slow stagger of 1.5kms on chemo days building up to a reasonably brisk 5kms by the end of the three week cycle. This was down to 4kms by the end as TC was pretty brutal. I had low blood pressure issues, a heart that beat very rapidly with the slightest effort and the resulting need to sit down at regular intervals while walking.

    I would definitely have attended a structured exercise programme if it was offered.

    I've just finished an oncology exercise physiology course which was brilliant. Two sessions a week of an hour long programme individually tailored for me. My strength and fitness was measured before and after the seven week course and there have been improvements of varying degrees on all areas tested. I am by no means back to normal but I feel stronger and fitter. I feel better!

    It taught me to move faster when I'm walking which I now do. I'm beginning the ExMed programme next month. That's three sessions a week for three months, and after that I'll join a gym. The AI I'm on puts my bone density at risk so it's very important for me to do load bearing exercise.

    Interestingly the exercise physiologist who was running the course has just completed a study as to whether these programmes change people's exercise behaviour when they're finished. She found that they don't. We humans are a lazy lot. I'm determined to buck the trend.

    I hate that I've lost my strength. The other day I was opening a bottle of wine for my father-in-law. Try as I could, I simply could not get the metal cap to twist free of the ring. I had to get my 86yo father-in-law to do it... which he did with ease! I'm 52. I need to be able to open a bottle of wine!! This is not a life skill I'm prepared to give away at this stage! K xox
  • kezmusc
    kezmusc Member Posts: 1,544
     @Kmakm I reckon I would have chewed the cap of to get to the wine if no one was around. Seriously.  LOL.

    I tried to walk up the back paddock the afternoon of round 2 AC after reading the exercise thing.  I made it about 100m my heart started pounding, I threw up then fainted.  No way could I exercise the afternoon of that drug. I was flat out making it from the car to the couch.
    The next day was ok as I was buzzing like a bee from the steroids. Taxol, no problems.