Patient-reported physical activity and the association with health-related quality of life in head and neck cancer survivors

Annette J. van Nieuwenhuizen, Laurien M. Buffart, Cornelia F. van Uden-Kraan, Lilly Ann van der Velden, Martin Lacko, Johannes Brug, C. R. Leemans, Irma M. Verdonck-de Leeuw

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Purpose: This study aimed to assess patient-reported levels of physical activity (PA) and its associations with health-related quality of life (HRQoL) adjusted for important demographic, lifestyle-related, and clinical factors, among head and neck (HNC) survivors. Methods: This cross-sectional study included 116 HNC survivors. PA was assessed with the Physical Activity Scale for the Elderly (PASE) and HRQoL with the EORTC-QLQ-C30 and EORTC-HN35. Associations were studied using univariable and multivariable regression analyses. Results: Median PASE score was 100.3 (interquartile range 65.1;170.8) of which 54% were household, 34% leisure-time, and 12% occupational activities. Younger HNC survivors had higher levels of PA. Higher PA was significantly associated with higher global QoL (p < 0.05). Findings for physical function, role function, social function, fatigue, and pain were in line, but not statistically significant (0.05 ≤ p < 0.10). Conclusions: Among HNC survivors, a large proportion of PA consists of household activities. Younger HNC survivors had higher PA levels, and higher PA levels were associated with higher HRQoL.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-9
Number of pages9
JournalSupportive Care in Cancer
Issue number4
Early online date27 Nov 2017
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2018


  • Exercise
  • Head and neck neoplasm
  • Health-related quality of life
  • Physical activity
  • Physical functioning

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