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News and Featured Stories from St. Vincent's Medical Center
Published: 06/11/2012

Moving to Wellness:

A Pilot Study Examining a Nurse-Driven Exercise Program in Acutely Ill Patients With Cancer


Cancer Care at St. Vincent's Medical CenterPreventing patients with cancer from falling is a particularly important strategy for avoiding serious patient harm. Patients with cancer often fall as a result of overestimating their abilities as they adapt to the onset of fatigue and diminished functional status or muscle strength. That deconditioning can develop quickly with immobilization or prolonged recumbency.

The effect of regularly supervised exercise programs led by nurses on maintaining muscle strength, thus preventing falls and reducing pressure ulcers, was examined in this feasibility study. Patients’ muscle strength was assessed through the development and use of the Moving to Wellness Assessment Tool before implementing the Moving to Wellness Exercise Program.

Of the 16 study participants, 81% maintained or improved their muscle strength compared to their original score. This pilot study was a unique opportunity to engage patients in a nurse-driven program to support minimal deconditioning of patients with cancer during acute illness. read more

The full study, conducted by Teresa Money McLaughlin, APRN, MSN, AOCN®, Emma Rondares Wittstein, MSN, RN-BC, Teresa H. White, RN, BSN, OCN®, Cindy A. Czaplinski, RN, MSN, NE-BC, and Sally O’Toole Gerard, DNP, RN, CNL, CDE can be found here. Please download and read more.

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