Purpose: Physical, nutritional and quality-of-life compromises are known sequelae of oesophageal cancer (OC) treatment. Inflammation and oxidative stress may be relevant to adverse consequences. Multimodal rehabilitation involving exercise and diet prescription may attenuate some of the negative consequences and optimise survivorship, and this was assessed in this feasibility study in OC patients at least 1 year post-oesophagectomy.
Methods: The 12-week programme included supervised and home-based exercise, dietetic counselling to ensure energy balance and multidisciplinary education. Baseline and post-intervention assessments examined aerobic fitness, physical activity and body composition. Serum interleukin (IL)-1β, tumour necrosis factor (TNF)-α, IL-6 and IL-8 were measured via multiplex arrays. Lactate secretion, lipid peroxidation (4-HNE) and oxidative stress (8-iso-PGF2α) were measured by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA).
Results: Twelve patients (mean (SD) age 64(1.29) years) participated. IL-8 reduced significantly from pre- to post-intervention (percentage change -11.25 % (95 % CI -20.98 to -1.51 %), p = 0.03), and there was a non-significant trend towards lower expression patterns of other inflammatory mediators. At baseline, inflammatory status correlated inversely with sedentary behaviour (IL-6 rho = -0.74, IL-8 rho = -0.59, TNF-α rho = -0.69; p < 0.05). While energy metabolism did not change, post-intervention lactate concentration correlated strongly and inversely with aerobic fitness (rho = -0.68, p = 0.02). Body composition was maintained throughout the intervention.
Conclusions: Results suggest that multimodal rehabilitation following OC treatment reduced inflammatory status without compromising body composition. Findings will be further examined in a larger randomised controlled trial.
Keywords: Cancer survivors; Diet; Education; Exercise; Oesophageal cancer; Rehabilitation.