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UBC Theses and Dissertations

Effects of Pilates exercises on shoulder range of motion, pain, mood and upper extremity function in women living with breast cancer : a pilot study Keays, Kimberley Susan


Background and Purpose: Our purpose was to examine the effects of Pilates exercises on shoulder range of motion (ROM), pain, mood, and upper extremity (UE) function in women who had been treated for breast cancer. Participants: Participants were four women who had undergone axillary dissection and radiation therapy for Stage I-III breast cancer. Methods: A non-concurrent, multiple baseline, single subject research design was used to examine the effects of Pilates exercises on the four outcomes. Results: Visual analyses of the data suggest a moderate functional relationship between the implementation of the Pilates program and improved shoulder abduction and external rotation ROM. Statistically significant improvement in shoulder internal and external rotation on the affected UE was shown for the participant with metastatic disease. The improving baselines seen for pain, mood and UE function data make it impossible to assess Pilates’ effects. No adverse events were experienced. Discussion and Conclusion: Pilates may be an effective, enjoyable and safe exercise option for women recovering from breast cancer treatments; however further research is needed.

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