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Maximal oxygen uptake in patients exercising during cancer treatment

Ann Christin Helgesen Bjørke of the Faculty of Health and Sport Sciences at the University of Agder has submitted her thesis entitled “Maximal oxygen uptake in patients exercising during cancer treatment – an evaluation of test criteria and the impact of exercise intensity“ and will defend the thesis for the PhD-degree Thursday 5 November 2020. (Photo: Private)

The overall aim of the thesis was to contribute to the research related to how cancer patients should exercise while they are undergoing cancer treatment.

Ann Christin Helgesen Bjørke

PhD Candidate

The disputation will be held digitally, because of the Corona covid-19-situation. Spectators may follow the disputation digitally – link is available below.

 

Ann Christin Helgesen Bjørke of the Faculty of Health and Sport Sciences at the University of Agder has submitted her his thesis entitled “Maximal oxygen uptake in patients exercising during cancer treatment – an evaluation of test criteria and the impact of exercise intensity“ and will defend the thesis for the PhD-degree Thursday 5 November 2020.

She has followed the PhD Programme at the Faculty of Health and Sport Sciences at the University of Agder.

Summary of the thesis by Ann Christin Helgesen Bjørke:

Maximal oxygen uptake in patients exercising during cancer treatment – an evaluation of test criteria and the impact of exercise intensity

The overall aim of the thesis was to contribute to the research related to how cancer patients should exercise while they are undergoing cancer treatment.

Cardiorespiratory fitness tests

We know that exercise during cancer treatment is beneficial for many health outcomes, and in the present thesis the focus was on different exercise factors (exercise frequency, intensity, time/duration and type) and how they could affect cardiorespiratory fitness.

Further, since there is a lack of agreement in the literature concerning which criteria to use when validating cardiorespiratory fitness tests (maximal oxygen uptake test; ) among cancer patients, one additional aim was to investigate typical test-criteria in a selection of newly diagnosed cancer patients.

VO2max test findings

A total of three papers is included in the thesis.

In paper II, we found that the criteria respiratory exchange ratio (RER) and score on Borg’s rate of perceived exertion were related to the test leaders’ evaluation of whether the  test was evaluated as a “maximal” test.

In addition, we found maximal breathing frequency at the end of the  test to be a potentially useful objective criterion, but more research is needed to confirm this finding.

The results from the systematic review and meta-analysis of 13 studies (Paper I) demonstrate that exercise interventions with an aerobic component during cancer treatment positively impacted  compared with controls that did not perform any exercise.

Exercise programs

Furthermore, the duration of each exercise session, weekly exercise duration and volume (combination of duration and intensity) were associated with changes in  Through the large multicentre randomized trial Phys-Can (physical exercise and cancer) we found resistance and aerobic exercise at high intensity to be more beneficial compared to low – moderate intensity, especially when adherence to the exercise programs was accounted for.

 

Disputation facts:

The trial lecture and the public defence will take place online, via the Zoom conferencing app (link below)

Professor Rune Høigaard, Department of Sport Science and Physical Education, Faculty of Health and Sport Sciences, UiA, will chair the disputation.

The trial lecture at 10:15 hours
Public defence at 12:15 hours

Given topic for trial lecture"Curing the cancer – killing the heart: cardiovascular morbidity and mortality in women following treatment for breast cancer"

Thesis Title“Maximal oxygen uptake in patients exercising during cancer treatment – an evaluation of test criteria and the impact of exercise intensity“. A sub-study within the Phys-Can consortium: investigating criteria for maximal oxygen uptake testing and how prescribing different exercise characteristics impacts patients undergoing cancer treatment.

Search for the thesis in AURA - Agder University Research Archive, a digital archive of scientific papers, theses and dissertations from the academic staff and students at the University of Agder.

The thesis is available here:

 

The Candidate: Ann Christin Helgesen Bjørke (1983, Arendal) Sports education from Telemark university college, Bø - now University of Southeast Norway (2003)  Bachelors degree in physical activity and health (2006), Sogn og Fjordane university college, campus Sogndal - now Western Norway University of Applied Sciences (HVL) - with an exciting stay in the Dominican Republic studying tropical (tropisk outdoor life directed by Finnmark university college. Masters degree in physical activity and health at NIH - Norwegian School of Sport Sciences (2008). From 2008: Worked as a health and exercise therapist within work-oriented rehabilitation, different positions at secondary and upper secondary schools in Oslo and Agder. Present position: Assistant Professor at the Department of Sport Science and Physical Education, UiA.

Opponents:

First opponent: Researcher, PhD, Trine Moholdt, Department of Circulation and Medical Imaging, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, NTNU - Norwegian University of Science and Technology

Second opponent: MSc, PhD Post doc Jesper Frank Christensen, Centre for Inflammation and Metabolism/Centre for Physical Activity Research (CIM/CFAS), Rigshospitalet, Copenhagen, Denmark.

Associate Professor Anine Christine Medin, Department of Nutrition and Public Health, University of Agder, is appointed as the administrator for the assessment commitee.

Supervisors were Professor Sveinung Berntsen Stølevik, UiA, (main supervisor), Professor Truls Raastad, Department of Physical Performance, NIH - Norwegian School of Sport Sciences and Department of Sport Science and Physical Education, Faculty of Health and Sport Sciences, UiA and Professor Peter Nygren, Professor at Department of Immunology, Genetics and Pathology at Uppsala University and chief physician in Onkology at Akademiska sjukhuset in Uppsala, Sweden (co-supervisors)

 

What to do as an audience member:

The disputation is open to the public, but to follow the trial lecture and the public defence, which is transmitted via the Zoom conferencing app, you have to register as an audience member.

We ask audience members to join the virtual trial lecture at 10:05 at the earliest and the public defense at 12:05 at the earliest. After these times, you can leave and rejoin the meeting at any time. Further, we ask audience members to turn off their microphone and camera and keep them turned off throughout the event. You do this at the bottom left of the image when in Zoom. We recommend you use ‘Speaker view’. You select that at the top right corner of the video window when in Zoom.

Opponent ex auditorio:

The chair invites members of the public to pose questions ex auditorio in the introduction to the public defense, with deadlines. Questions can be submitted to the chair, professor Rune Høigaard on e-mail rune.hoigaard@uia.no