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Breast Cancer

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  • Breast Cancer is the most commonly diagnosed cancer in females

  • in Australia 1 in 8 women are diagnosed

  • 61 years is the average age of diagnosis

  • Breast Cancer may also be diagnosed in men


  • Breast cancer is an abnormal growth of cells in the breast lobules or ducts

  • The cause of these growths are unknown

  • Some factors which may increase your risk of being diagnosed with breast cancer which include:

  • over 60 years

  • female

  • family history

  • inheritance of BRCA1 or BRCA2 gene

  • previous cancer diagnosis

  • late menopause

  • certain lifestyle factors such as being overweight, inactive and a high alcohol consumption

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Signs & Symptoms

  • lumps or thickening or breast tissues

  • changes in breast size or shape

  • nipple changes or discharge

  • skin changes such as redness or dimpling

  • pain to the breast region which does not go away

Differential Diagnosis

  • Initial diagnosis of breast cancer will be coordinated through a GP with referrals to radiologists, oncologist and other medical professionals.

  • differential diagnosis which your GP may explore include but are not limited too fibroadenom, fibrocystic breast or intraductal papilloma

  • in Australia women over 40 years are eligable for government funded mammograms every 2 years or yearly if in a higher risk category

PROmotion Assessment and outcome measures

  • Once diagnosed individuals with breast cancer may book an initial assessment with an Exercise Physiologist at PROmotion

  • An assessment with Exercise Physiologist will include a medical PAR-Q, medical history, current signs and symptoms, treatment plans, current physical activity levels, individuals goals and blood pressure

  • Based on individual goals further assessment may include Body composition (height, weight, body girths), Cardiovascular fitness test, muscular strength & endurance, flexibility, balance and range of movement

  • During treatments such as chemotherapy training plans may be altered daily depending on fatigue and other side effects, this will be done on an individual level

  • When treatment is completed assessments and goals will be revisited every 4-6 weeks

How to Manage

  • Guidelines for Exercise for women with breast cancer include 150minutes of aerobic exercise plus 2-3 resistance sessions per week

  • Exercise has been shown to be beneficial to maintain during chemotherapy, radiation therapy and hormonal therapies

  • Management options at PROmotion will include an initial assessment to discuss medical background, prognosis, current treatment plans and any symptoms which have developed and assess any possible barriers to exercise

  • After the initial assessment an individual exercise program and plan will be developed which will be monitored and edited as needed during treatment

  • Individual and small group classes are available


  1. Schwartz AL, de Heer HD, Bea JW. Initiating Exercise Interventions to Promote Wellness in Cancer Patients and Survivors. Oncology (Williston Park). 2017 Oct 15;31(10):711-7. PMID: 29083464; PMCID: PMC6361522.

  2. Dieli-Conwright CM, Courneya KS, Demark-Wahnefried W, Sami N, Lee K, Buchanan TA, Spicer DV, Tripathy D, Bernstein L, Mortimer JE. Effects of Aerobic and Resistance Exercise on Metabolic Syndrome, Sarcopenic Obesity, and Circulating Biomarkers in Overweight or Obese Survivors of Breast Cancer: A Randomized Controlled Trial. J Clin Oncol. 2018 Mar 20;36(9):875-883. doi: 10.1200/JCO.2017.75.7526. Epub 2018 Jan 22. Erratum in: J Clin Oncol. 2020 Apr 20;38(12):1370. Erratum in: J Clin Oncol. 2020 Jun 20;38(18):2115. PMID: 29356607; PMCID: PMC5858524.

  3. Akram M, Iqbal M, Daniyal M, Khan AU. Awareness and current knowledge of breast cancer. Biol Res. 2017 Oct 2;50(1):33. doi: 10.1186/s40659-017-0140-9. PMID: 28969709; PMCID: PMC5625777.

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