Purpose: Physical inactivity has been associated with higher mortality risk among survivors of colorectal cancer (CRC), but the independent effects of pre- versus postdiagnosis activity are unclear, and the association between watching television (TV) and mortality in survivors of CRC is previously undefined.
Methods: We analyzed the associations between prediagnosis (n = 3,797) and postdiagnosis (n = 1,759) leisure time physical activity (LTPA) and TV watching and overall and disease-specific mortality among patients with CRC. We used Cox proportional hazards regression to estimate hazard ratios (HRs) and 95% CIs, adjusting for known mortality risk factors.
Results: Comparing survivors of CRC reporting more than 7 hours per week (h/wk) of prediagnosis LTPA with those reporting no LTPA, we found a 20% lower risk of all-cause mortality (HR, 0.80; 95% CI, 0.68 to 0.95; P for trend = .021). Postdiagnosis LTPA of ≥ 7 h/wk, compared with none, was associated with a 31% lower all-cause mortality risk (HR, 0.69; 95% CI, 0.49 to 0.98; P for trend = .006), independent of prediagnosis activity. Compared with 0 to 2 TV hours per day (h/d) before diagnosis, those reporting ≥ 5 h/d of TV before diagnosis had a 22% increased all-cause mortality risk (HR, 1.22; 95% CI, 1.06 to 1.41; P trend = .002), and more postdiagnosis TV watching was associated with a nonsignificant 25% increase in all-cause mortality risk (HR, 1.25; 95% CI, 0.93 to 1.67; P for trend = .126).
Conclusion: LTPA was inversely associated with all-cause mortality, whereas more TV watching was associated with increased mortality risk. For both LTPA and TV watching, postdiagnosis measures independently explained the association with mortality. Clinicians should promote both minimizing TV time and increasing physical activity for longevity among survivors of CRC, regardless of previous behaviors.
© 2014 by American Society of Clinical Oncology.