Behavioral physical activity intervention coupled with standard post-cancer directed treatment care to mitigate chronic pain in childhood cancer survivors: A protocol for a single-center, pilot randomized controlled trial

Smita Dandekar, Maxime Caru, Kathryn H. Schmitz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Long term survivors of childhood cancer have a high prevalence of chronic pain. Novel, multidisciplinary approaches to manage pain, are needed to allow for a reduction in the use of opioids for pain management. Physical activity is highly effective in managing chronic pain in children and adolescents, however, evidence about the combination of physical activity intervention and pain medications in chronic pain management in childhood cancer survivors is lacking. The aim of this study is to investigate the feasibility, acceptability and preliminary effects of a behavioral physical activity intervention integrated into standard post cancer directed treatment care to mitigate chronic pain in this unique population. Methods: This is a single site pilot randomized controlled trial of a 16-week physical activity intervention coupled with standard care. The primary aim is to assess the feasibility and acceptability of the physical activity intervention in childhood cancer survivors with chronic pain. Secondary aims include evaluating the differences in functional and psychosocial outcomes along with self-reported pain scores and cumulative dose of pain medications between the exercise group and standard cancer care group. The physical activity intervention is a home-based program structured to increase patients' physical activity behavior and to favor low intensity bodily movement using aerobic exercise and resistance training. Conclusions: This study will demonstrate that behavioral supportive measures like physical activity may be a novel means to improve cancer related chronic pain in young survivors of childhood cancer and decrease medication usage for pain along with improvement in functional and psychosocial outcomes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number101216
JournalContemporary Clinical Trials Communications
StatePublished - Dec 2023

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Pharmacology

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