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PURPOSE: A randomized phase II study was performed to measure the potential therapeutic effects of yoga on fatigue, erectile dysfunction, urinary incontinence, and overall quality of life (QOL) in prostate cancer (PCa) patients undergoing external beam radiation therapy (RT).METHODS AND MATERIALS: The participants were randomized to yoga and no-yoga cohorts (1:1). Twice-weekly yoga interventions were offered throughout the 6- to 9-week courses of RT. Comparisons of standardized assessments were performed between the 2 cohorts for the primary endpoint of fatigue and the secondary endpoints of erectile dysfunction, urinary incontinence, and QOL before, during, and after RT. RESULTS: From October 2014 to January 2016, 68 eligible PCa patients underwent informed consent and agreed to participate in the study. Of the 68 patients, 18 withdrew early, mostly because of treatment schedule-related time constraints, resulting in 22 and 28 patients in the yoga and no-yoga groups, respectively. Throughout treatment, those in the yoga arm reported less fatigue than those in the control arm, with global fatigue, effect of fatigue, and severity of fatigue subscales showing statistically significant interactions (P<.0001). The sexual health scores (International Index of Erectile Function Questionnaire) also displayed a statistically significant interaction (P=.0333). The International Prostate Symptom Score revealed a statistically significant effect of time (P<.0001) but no significant effect of treatment (P=.1022). The QOL measures had mixed results, with yoga having a significant time by treatment effect on the emotional, physical, and social scores but not on functional scores. CONCLUSIONS: A structured yoga intervention of twice-weekly classes during a course of RT was associated with a significant reduction in pre-existing and RT-related fatigue and urinary and sexual dysfunction in PCa patients.
PURPOSE: Studies have demonstrated beneficial health effects from yoga interventions in cancer patients, but predominantly in breast cancer. Research on its role in alleviating prostate cancer (PC) patients' side effects has been lacking. Our primary goal was to determine the feasibility of recruiting PC patients on a clinical trial of yoga while they underwent external beam radiation therapy (RT).METHODS: Twice-weekly yoga interventions were offered throughout the RT course (6-9 weeks). Baseline demographic information was collected. Feasibility was declared if 15 of the first 75 eligible PC patients approached (20%) were successfully accrued and completed the intervention. Additional end points included standardized assessments of fatigue, erectile dysfunction (ED), urinary incontinence (UI), and quality of life (QOL) at time points before, during, and after RT. RESULTS: Between May 2013 and June 2014, 68 eligible PC patients were identified. 23 patients (34%) declined, and 45 (56%) consented to the study. 18 (40%) were voluntarily withdrawn due to treatment conflicts. Of the remaining 27, 12 (30%) participated in ≥50% of classes, and 15 (59%) were evaluable. Severity of fatigue scores demonstrated significant variability, with fatigue increasing by week 4, but then improving over the course of treatment (P = .008). ED, UI, and general QOL scores demonstrated reassuringly stable, albeit not significant trends. CONCLUSIONS: A structured yoga intervention of twice-weekly classes is feasible for PC patients during a 6- to 9-week course of outpatient radiotherapy. Preliminary results are promising, showing stable measurements in fatigue, sexual health, UI, and general QOL.