Prevalence of physical activity and its associated factors among breast cancer patients in Peninsular Malaysia: A multi-centre cross-sectional study

Adamu Ahmad Rufa'i, Siew Hwa Yen, Wan Abdul Manan Wan Muda


Shift in the dispersion of breast cancer population continues to be a major health concern for women in the developing countries. However, prevalence and associated factors of physical activity among this population have not been explored in Malaysia. This study determined the profile and factors associated with physical activity in the breast cancer women. A multi-center cross-sectional survey was conducted among 399 breast cancer women. Socio-demographic questionnaire was used to generate socio-demographic and clinical data. Physical activity was assessed using the international physical activity questionnaire (IPAQ-SF). Sociodemographic variables were summarized by descriptive statistics. Factors associated with physical activity were identified using Logistic regression analyses. Majority of the participants were married (83.9%), had surgery (92.4%) and menopause (74.1%). The overall physical activity prevalence was 39.4%. Non formal education (Adjusted Odds Ratio [AOR] 5.80; 95%CI: 1.65, 52.15;p=0.017), having had surgery (AOR 0.18; 95%CI: 0.04, 0.79; p=0.023), <1 year post diagnosis (AOR 1.16; 95%CI: 1.02, 5.36; p=0.039) and attaining menopause (AOR 4.50; 95%CI: 2.07, 7.28; p=0.005) were the significant factors associated with physical activity. Physical activity participation was low in the studied population. Non formal education, undergoing surgery, early diagnosis and menopausal status were associated with poor physical activity.


Breast cancer survivors, IPAQ, Malaysian Women, Physical activity, Sociodemographic

Full Text:



Parkin D. The global burden of cancer. Paper presented at the Seminars in cancer biology. 1998.

Jemal A, Bray F, Center MM, Ferlay J, Ward E, Forman D. Global cancer statistics. CA: a cancer journal for clinicians.2011; 61(2): 69-90.

Youlden DR, Cramb SM, Dunn NA, Muller JM, Pyke CM, Baade PD. The descriptive epidemiology of female breast cancer: an international comparison of screening, incidence, survival and mortality. Cancer Epidemiol. 2012; 36(3): 237-248. doi:10.1016/j.canep.2012.02.007.

Ferlay J, Shin H, Bray F, Forman D, Mathers C, Parkin D. GLOBOCAN 2008 v2.0, cancer incidence and mortality worldwide: IARC cancer base no. 10 [Internet]. Lyon: International Agency for Research on Cancer; 2010. This report provide estimates of the incidence of major type of cancers, at the national level, for 184 countries of the world. 2013.

Youlden DR, Cramb SM, Yip CH, Baade PD. Incidence and mortality of female breast cancer in the Asia-Pacific region. Cancer Biol Med.2014; 11(2): 101-115. doi:10.7497/j.issn.2095-3941.2014.02.005

National Cancer Registry, Ministry of Health Malaysia (NCR). Malaysia National Cancer Registry Report 2007. Kuala Lampur, Malaysia: National Cancer Registry, Ministry of Health (Malaysia). 2011.

Althuis MD, Fergenbaum JH, Garcia-Closas M, Brinton LA, Madigan MP, Sherman ME. Etiology of hormone receptor–defined breast cancer: a systematic review of the literature. Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev.2004; 13(10): 1558-1568.

Pathy NB, Yip CH, Taib NA, Hartman M, Saxena N, Iau P, et al. for Singapore-Malaysia Breast Cancer Working, Group. Breast cancer in a multi-ethnic Asian setting: results from the Singapore-Malaysia hospital-based breast cancer registry. Breast.2011; 20 (Suppl 2): S75-S80. doi:10.1016/j.breast.2011.01.015.

Schmitz KH, Courneya KS, Matthews C, Demark-Wahnefried W, Galvao DA, Pinto BM, et al. for the Expert Panel of the American College of Sports Medicine. American College of Sports Medicine roundtable on exercise guidelines for cancer survivors. Med Sci Sports Exerc.2010; 42(7): 1409-1426. doi:10.1249/MSS.0b013e3181e0c112.

Guthold R, Ono T, Strong KL, Chatterji S, Morabia A. Worldwide variability in physical inactivity a 51-country survey. Am J Prev Med. 2008; 34(6): 486-494. doi:10.1016/j.amepre.2008.02.013

Teh CH, Lim KK, Chan YY, Lim KH, Azahadi O, Hamizatul Akmar AH et al. The prevalence of physical activity and its associated factors among Malaysian adults: findings from the National Health and Morbidity Survey 2011. Public Health. 2014;128(5): 416-423. doi:10.1016/j.puhe.2013.10.008

Shahar S, Salleh RM, Ghazali AR, Koon PB, Mohamud W. Roles of adiposity, lifetime physical activity and serum adiponectin in occurrence of breast cancer among Malaysian women in Klang Valley. Asian Pac J Cancer Prev.2010; 11(1): 61-66.

Yen SH, Aishah KA, Krishna MBV, Wan Muda WM, Rufa’i AA. Lifetime physical activity and breast cancer: A case study in Kelantan, Malaysia. Asian Pac J Cancer Prev. 2016; 17(8): 4083-4088.

Arya R, Antonisamy B, Kumar S. Sample size estimation in prevalence studies. Indian J Paed. 2012; 79(11): 1482-1488.

Irwin ML, McTiernan A, Bernstein L, Gilliland FD, Baumgartner R, Baumgartner K, et al. Physical activity levels among breast cancer survivors. Medicine and science in sports and exercise.2004; 36(9): 1484.

Demark-Wahnefried W, Aziz NM, Rowland JH, Pinto BM. Riding the crest of the teachable moment: promoting long-term health after the diagnosis of cancer. J Clin Oncol.2005; 23(24): 5814-5830.

Ferrer RA, Huedo-Medina TB, Johnson BT, Ryan S, Pescatello LS. Exercise interventions for cancer survivors: a meta-analysis of quality of life outcomes. Ann Behav Med.2011; 41(1): 32-47.

Blanchard, C. M., Courneya, K. S., & Stein, K. Cancer survivors’ adherence to lifestyle behavior recommendations and associations with health-related quality of life: results from the American Cancer Society's SCS-II. J Clin Oncol. 2008; 26(13): 2198-2204.

Ascensão A, Ferreira R, Magalhães J. Exercise-induced cardioprotection-biochemical, morphological and functional evidence in whole tissue and isolated mitochondria. Intl J Cardiol.2007; 117(1): 16-30.

Mason C, Alfano CM, Smith AW, Wang CY, Neuhouser ML, Duggan C, et al. Long-term physical activity trends in breast cancer survivors. Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev.2013; 22(6): 1153-1161.

Pinto BM, Trunzo JJ, Reiss P, Shiu SY. Exercise participation after diagnosis of breast cancer: trends and effects on mood and quality of life. Psych Oncol.2002; 11(5): 389-400.

Irwin ML, Crumley D, McTiernan A, Bernstein L, Baumgartner R, Gilliland FD, et al. Physical activity levels before and after a diagnosis of breast carcinoma. Cancer. 2003; 97(7): 1746-1757.

Charlier C, Van Hoof E, Pauwels E, Lechner L, Spittaels H, De Bourdeaudhuij, I. The contribution of general and cancer-related variables in explaining physical activity in a breast cancer population 3 weeks to 6 months post-treatment. Psych Oncol.2013; 22(1): 203-211. doi:10.1002/pon.2079.

Jurakić D, Pedišić Ž, Andrijašević M. Physical activity of Croatian population: cross-sectional study using International Physical Activity Questionnaire. Croatian Med J.2009; 50(2): 165-173.

Giles-Corti B, Donovan RJ. Socioeconomic status differences in recreational physical activity levels and real and perceived access to a supportive physical environment. Prev Med. 2002; 35(6): 601-611.

Danhauer SC, Mihalko SL, Russell GB, Campbell CR, Felder L, Daley K, et al. Restorative yoga for women with breast cancer: findings from a randomized pilot study. Psych Oncol. 2009; 18(4): 360-368.

Sammarco A. Quality of life of breast cancer survivors: a comparative study of age cohorts. Cancer Nurs. 2009; 32(5): 347-356.

Courneya KS, Friedenreich CM. Physical exercise and quality of life following cancer diagnosis: a literature review. Ann Behav Med. 1999; 21(2): 171-179.

Janz NK, Mujahid M, Lantz PM, Fagerlin A, Salem B, Morrow M, et al. Population-based study of the relationship of treatment and sociodemographics on quality of life for early stage breast cancer. Qual Life Res. 2005; 14(6): 1467-1479.

Cavalheiro JAC, Bittelbrunn A, Menke CH, Biazús JV, Xavier NL, Cericatto R, et al. Sexual function and chemotherapy in postmenopausal women with breast cancer. BMC Women's Health.2012; 12(1): 1.

Ochsenkühn R, Hermelink K, Clayton AH, von Schönfeldt V, Gallwas J, Ditsch N, et al. Menopausal status in breast cancer patients with past chemotherapy determines long‐term hypoactive sexual desire disorder. J Sexual Med. 2011; 8(5): 1486-1494.

Emilee G, Ussher J, Perz J. Sexuality after breast cancer: a review. Maturitas.2010; 66(4): 397-407.

Baucom DH, Porter LS, Kirby JS, Gremore TM, Wiesenthal N, Aldridge W, et al. A couple‐based intervention for female breast cancer. Psych Oncol.2009; 18(3): 276-283.

Rogers LQ, Markwell SJ, Verhulst S, McAuley E, Courneya KS. Rural breast cancer survivors: exercise preferences and their determinants. Psych Oncol. 2009;18(4): 412-421. doi:10.1002/pon.1497.

Copyright (c) 2019 Journal of Biomedical and Clinical Sciences (JBCS)

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

Journal of Biomedical and Clinical Sciences (JBCS) publishes original research articles, short review, short communication, case reports, quiz and letter to editor that covering the areas of fundamental aspects of biomedical and clinical sciences, from pre-clinical towards translational research and their applications in medicine, dentistry and healthcare management. JBCS aims to provide a platform for basic science and clinical researchers to communicate and share their research findings to the advancement of technologies in biomedical and clinical sciences by providing maximum access to scholarly communication.

Flag Counter           


                                              Copyright © 2016 AMDI Publisher, Universiti Sains Malaysia.
Disclaimer : This website has been updated to the best of our knowledge to be accurate. However, Universiti Sains Malaysia shall not be liable for any loss or damage caused by the usage of any information obtained from this web site.
                                            Best viewed: Mozilla Firefox 4.0 & Google Chrome at 1024 × 768 resolution.