Background: Older people with lung cancer are often frail and unfit due to their cancer and co-morbidities and may tolerate cancer treatments poorly. Physical activity (PA) and a healthy diet offer quality of life benefit to people with cancer before, during, and post treatment. However, older adults are poorly represented in the clinical trials on which recommendations were made. Objective: To assess the acceptability, usefulness, and practicality of delivering a tailored wellbeing (PA and nutrition) intervention for older adults with lung cancer before, during, and after cancer treatments (chemotherapy and/or immunotherapy). Methods: Semi-structured interviews conducted with nine patients with lung cancer and three patients with mesothelioma, ≥70 years and ten informal carers, and nine Multidisciplinary Team (MDT) members. A topic guide covered the acceptability, usefulness, and practicality of a wellbeing intervention as well as specific feedback on individual components. Data were subjected to thematic analysis. Findings: Four themes were generated: current lack of wellbeing care in clinical work; preferred “can have” dietary and “can do” PA advice; peer support as facilitating factor; and barriers to compliance including patients' psychological and physical issues as well as current cancer pathway and staffing issues. Conclusion: Older adults with lung cancer would welcome a proactive, clear and instructive, wellbeing intervention. Many barriers to compliance exist, particularly before and during cancer treatments due to the psycho-social impact of diagnosis, and the effects of cancer treatment. The intervention must be tailored to individual need and address physical limitations, psychological and social welfare in addition to PA and nutritional advice.
Swan, F., Chen, H., Forbes, C. C., Johnson, M. J., & Lind, M. (in press). CANcer BEhavioural nutrition and exercise feasibility trial (CanBenefit); phase I qualitative interview findings. Journal of Geriatric Oncology, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jgo.2020.09.026