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Background. In the earlier stages of prostate cancer, effective treatments have created a need for research to focus on practices that may improve quality of life throughout survivorship. Physical activity is a significant supportive care management strategy for prostate cancer survivors, though the optimal modality is not yet understood. Hypotheses. The authors hypothesized that yoga would be a feasible physical activity option for prostate cancer survivors and their support persons and that the incorporation of social support would increase physical activity adherence. Methods. This 14-week feasibility study involved a 7-week class-based yoga program (adherence phase), followed by 7 weeks of self-selected physical activity (maintenance phase). Demographic information, physical activity behavior, quality of life, fatigue, stress, mood, and fitness variables were assessed at 3 time points. Prostate cancer survivors' perceived social support was rated during yoga and after yoga. Results. Class attendance was 6.1 and 5.8 for prostate cancer survivors (n = 15) and their support persons (n = 10), respectively, for the 7 classes. Levels of perceived social support were higher for those who brought a support person. Significant improvements with regard to stress, fatigue, and mood before and after yoga class (all Ps < .05) were reported by all participants. No clinically significant changes were noted on prostate cancer survivor's quality of life or fatigue over the course of the 14-week study. Conclusions. Yoga is a feasible physical activity option for prostate cancer survivors. The program had a promising uptake rate, high program adherence rate, and there were acute program benefits with regard to stress, fatigue, and mood for all participants. Future examination is warranted with regard to chronic benefits and group cohesion influences on levels of perceived social support.
Limited research suggests yoga may be a viable gentle physical activity option with a variety of health-related quality of life, psychosocial and symptom management benefits. The purpose of this review was to determine the clinical significance of patient-reported outcomes from yoga interventions conducted with cancer survivors. A total of 25 published yoga intervention studies for cancer survivors from 2004-2011 had patient-reported outcomes, including quality of life, psychosocial or symptom measures. Thirteen of these studies met the necessary criteria to assess clinical significance. Clinical significance for each of the outcomes of interest was examined based on 1 standard error of the measurement, 0.5 standard deviation, and relative comparative effect sizes and their respective confidence intervals. This review describes in detail these patient-reported outcomes, how they were obtained, their relative clinical significance and implications for both clinical and research settings. Overall, clinically significant changes in patient-reported outcomes suggest that yoga interventions hold promise for improving cancer survivors' well-being. This research overview provides new directions for examining how clinical significance can provide a unique context for describing changes in patient-reported outcomes from yoga interventions. Researchers are encouraged to employ indices of clinical significance in the interpretation and discussion of results from yoga studies.