Sport and Fitness

A major goal of the Brisbane Clinic for Lymphoma, Myeloma and Leukaemia is ensuring wherever possible that a normal or near normal life continues during treatment and that normal life can be resumed as quickly as possible after treatment has been completed.

Maintaining fitness after being diagnosed with any form of cancer or leukaemia is important for those who  played sport or did regular exercise prior to becoming ill, but also for those with a more sedentary lifestyle.

For an athlete or sportsperson (professional or amateur), it is important to preserve as much fitness as possible during treatment and we have a particular interest in assisting with this. Many people with lymphoma, leukaemia or other cancers want to remain active during their treatment and want to return to their sport afterwards. Whether you are a professional or an amateur sportsman, it is important that we know about your sporting interests and goals well before your treatment starts. This allows us to consider additional assessments that may help your recovery after treatment and to consider the most suitable treatment in your particular case.

There are benefits to improving fitness for all patients undergoing chemotherapy or other treatments for cancer, not just keen sportsman. The fitter you are, the better your body can withstand chemotherapy and the faster you will bounce back to normal after treatment or time in hospital.

Many patients who have been diagnosed with chronic leukaemia, myeloma or many forms of lymphoma do not need treatment immediately, but may be treated months or years later. During this period between diagnosis and treatment, it is important to work on general fitness.  The most common symptom during and after chemotherapy is fatigue. This often lasts for 3-6 months and can markedly delay your return to your normal activities - study, work, looking after your family or home, and enjoying your hobbies and interests.  The more exercise you can do before and during your treatment (within your limits), the faster you will return to normal life.

Exercising and keeping fit also helps control your weight, which is important as being overweight increases the chances of complications during treatment, consequently increasing the amount of time you spend in hospital and reducing the chances that optimal treatment can be administered.

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