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Email: dale@mepg.com.au | Phone: (03) 9813 2189

Case Studies/Client Stories

Client testimonial - Simo

I joined the Moving Beyond Cancer exercise physiology group in June 2016. I attend the group exercise class once per week on Monday mornings. The class is targeted for men dealing with prostate cancer which I was diagnosed with in 2013.

The classes consist of exercises tailored towards improving strength, balance and aerobic fitness. Whilst a lot of the exercises can also be done at home, I find it useful to attend in person once a week. The experienced and knowledgeable instructors at Moving Beyond Cancer can then ensure that I am doing the exercises correctly and prevent me from slipping into any bad habits. They also vary the program from time to time which helps to keep it interesting.

I also very much enjoy the camaraderie that develops during these group classes. After all, we all share similar experiences in managing our health issues.

I have benefited from attending Moving Beyond Cancer enormously both in terms of my physical and mental wellbeing.

Client Testimonial - Fiona

I started at moving beyond cancer mid 2016 and continue to attend each week. I first went along for an assessment after being diagnosed with metastatic breast cancer in 2015. I had found that my joints were very painful with the anti-oestrogen medication i was taking, which was limiting my ability to exercise.  Dale developed a program which really improved my flexibility and strength. I find attending each week is a great way to stay motivated with exercise and i find the knowledge level of the staff and their encouraging support so helpful.  I think exercise has really given me a focus in dealing with this metastatic cancer, i feel empowered that i can make myself stronger and fitter to stay as well as possible.

Cheers, fiona xx

Client testimonial - Russ

Approximately 3.5 years ago I received my diagnosis of advanced prostate cancer (the disease had spread from the prostate gland to other sites in my body), and after absorbing the news, I resolved to get in best shape, mentally and physically for the journey ahead. 

Following an item around about the same time on the ABCTV Catalyst program, which focussed on the benefits of supervised exercise for cancer patients, and especially after chemotherapy, I contacted the Cancer Council of Victoria for advice. 

I was referred to several Exercise Physiologists, including Ms. Dale Ischia's clinic "Moving Through Cancer" in Camberwell. 

I learned that Exercise Physiogists specialise in recommending and supervising exercises for cancer patients. 

As a patient of Dale's over these last three years I have enjoyed weekly intensive exercise sessions (with small group numbers), and with each exercise format tailored to the needs of the individual. 

The exercises we do are designed to improve three main areas for patients in our group :

1: Cardio exercise - huffing and puffing 

  1. Strengthening - weights and stretches
  2. Improving balance and core strength. 

It's intense but all good fun, and we all go away feeling much, much better. 

Partnering with Dale and her qualified staff has made a huge difference to my quality of life, and especially when facing a long term cancer. I have greater confidence, feel stronger when out and about, and am better prepared for ongoing meetings with medical practitioners. 

Russ Harwood. 

Breast Cancer Case Study
Background
  • 38 year old Locally advanced, grade 3 breast cancer. No co-morbidities.
  • Otherwise healthy & fit.
Treatment
  • Double mastectomy & 5 lymph nodes removed
  • Chemotherapy: Doxorubicin & cyclophosphamide x4. Paclitaxel x 12. 6 months.
  • 6 weeks of daily radiation treatment
  • Herceptin every 21 days for 1 year.
Side effects/
considerations/
Precautions
  • Port.
  • Potential for lymphedema.
  • Increase risk of cardio-myopathies.
  • Arm ROM.
  • Lung scarring from radiation.
  • Skin sensitivities.
  • Blood counts
  • Side Effects:
  • Peripheral Neuropathy, hands & feet but can still do up buttons.
  • Mild fatigue
  • Mild pain in joints – fingers, knees & ankles
Pre-cancer activity Gym every 3-4 days, mod-high intensity
Pre EP exercise
  • Daily walks for around 30 mins, low intensity
  • Exercised throughout chemotherapy. At least a 5 min walk.
  • Work: built up from 2 days to 4 days per week.
Goals
  • Learn how hard she can push herself
  • Maintain/improve cardiovascular fitness
  • Improve dynamic balance
  • Improve upper body strength
Outcome Measures Weight, RBP, RHR, arm circumferences, functional strength, sit to stand, grip, bench height push ups, shoulder ROM, balance, sub max VO2.
Exercise Prescription
  • Light weights to start with. Progress gradually.
  • ROM for arm.
  • Monitor arm circumference.
  • Spikey ball massage
  • Progress walking intensity
  • Return to gym for strength, cardio & dynamic functional balance ex.
  • Closely monitor cardiac symptoms.

Outcomes

After 6 months of supervised EP sessions
  • Now going to gym 5 – 7 days per week. 10 – 30 mins cardio HR max 160.
  • Has made excellent gains in CV fitness & balance – during treatment. Need to work on strength. Now progressing to plyometric exercises for legs and continuing to gradually challenge the arms.
   
Pancreatic Cancer Case Study
Background
  • 57 year old husband and father is diagnosed with pancreatic cancer in December 2014. He was referred to me for February 2015 due to generalised fatigue and leg weakness, impacting his mobility.
  • His walking is limited to 15 minutes.
Treatment
  • Ongoing Chemotherapy
Side effects/
considerations/
Precautions
Investigations:
MRI on lumbar spine to rule out tumour on spine. – Showed L4/5 bulge nerve root compression.
Pre-EP activity
  • Prior to his diagnosis he was very active; swimming 3 times per week, walking 1 hour per day and doing pilates once a week.
  • He had stopped all activity after his cancer diagnosis.
Goals
  • Does not want to be a vegetable
  • Increase sit to stands to 15
  • Improve left leg strength
  • Increase walking tolerance
Outcome Measures
  • Weight
  • Anthropometrics
  • RBP
  • RHR
  • O2 saturation
  • Functional strength
  • Balance
Exercise Prescription
  • Resistance band leg extensions
  • Chair squat
  • Single leg bridge
  • Rocking up on toes back on heels
  • Incline push ups
  • 15 minute walks – progressing.
  • Single leg ¼ squat once able.
  • Progressive leg strengthening exercises.

Outcomes

After 5 months of supervised EP sessions
  • Walking tolerance increased from 15 minutes to 60 minutes.
  • 30 sec sit to stand increased from 4 to 21 repetitions.
  • Fatigue rating dropped from 5/10 to 3/10
  • Single leg stance eyes closed increased from 20 to 34 secs and 5 to 12 secs.
  • He was able to progress all exercises.
  • He was barely able to perform a single leg ¼ squat and is now performing single leg stand ups from a chair.
  • He is also going for 1-hour bike rides with his children on the weekends. 
  • This program has improved his quality of life.
Prostate Cancer Case Study
Background
  • 67 year-old husband, worker and golfer diagnosed with advanced prostate cancer.
  • No bone metastases.
Treatment
  • Robotic prostatectomy.
  • Radiation to chest & pelvis.
  • Hormone Treatment  (ADT) for 5 years
Side effects/
considerations/
Precautions
  • Low bone density
  • Fatigue
  • Weight gain (8kg – mainly fat)
  • Sarcopaenia        
  • Right knee pain – 4 arthroscopies
  • Left ankle pain – fell down stairs
  • History of depression
  • High BP
  • High cholesterol
  • Pelvic floor issues. Has significant incontinence. Wears pad
  • Watch for lung scarring/ cardiac issues due to radiation
Pre-EP activity
  • Plays golf once a week and occasionally walks the dog
  • Was a basketball player in the past (hence the knee osteoarthritis)
Goals
  • Control weight
  • Increase overall strength
  • Stabilize bone density
  • Improve continence
  • Increase golf swing
  • (Improve posture & thoracic ROM)
  • Improve strength & flexibility of right leg (decrease knee pain)
  • Improve dynamic & static balance
  • Improve pelvic floor
  • Mental health
Outcome Measures
  • Weight
  • Anthropometrics
  • RBP
  • RHR
  • O2 saturation
  • Grip strength
  • Functional strength
  • ROM
  • Balance
  • Sub max Vo2
Exercise Prescription Always use HR monitor.
Increase frequency of walking, followed by increasing intensity of walking.
I prescribed a home exercise program, however, motivation is an issue.
Joined Prostate Cancer Exercise Group for motivation & mental health
  • Cardiovascular interval training. HIIT
  • Single leg cycling
  • Thoracic rotation
  • Dynamic stretches
  • I stretch quadriceps
  • Partner mirror balance work
  • Dynamic balance
    • ball throws on Bosu
    • pod walking
  • Ball squat
  • Resistance exercise – building to 6-8RM 2-3 sets
  • All major muscle groups.
  • Stomping
  • Boxing
  • Agility ladder
  • Ball hamstring curls
  • Abdominal exercises – avoiding bearing down. Pelvic floor focus.
  • Stretches: chest, quadriceps, hamstrings, gluteals, claves,

Outcomes

After 5 months of supervised EP sessions
  • Reduction of knee pain
  • Reduction of fatigue
  • Improvement of mental health
  • Increase Grip strength from 40th to 80th percentile.
  • Increase lower limb strength
  • Improved range of movement
  • Improved balance by 50%.
  • Increase functional strength from 60th to 80th percentile

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Phone: (03) 9813 2189

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