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Men and yoga tackle prostate cancer

More benefits to yoga

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The bad news: more than 200,000 men are diagnosed with prostate cancer every year in the U.S. More bad news: during their treatment, these men often suffer from fatigue, bladder problems and sexual dysfunction. But a new study brings good news: it says yoga may be the key to feeling better.

Frank Falcone never thought he’d be in this “position.” Falcone said, “Yoga is for women! That’s a man’s view, there’s no way! And, I said, I’ll try it and so I tried it and I learned to love it! It was a life-changing experience.”

After getting a prostate cancer diagnosis, Frank’s recovery included radiation and twice-a-week yoga.

“It made me feel great, I didn’t have to get hit with a brick at the end of the study, at the end of the 55 days of treatment, I felt better than I did before I started.”

Neha Vapiwala, MD, Associate professor at the University of Pennsylvania said, “I think that has empowered them to feel like yeah, I can do this.”

Dr. Vapiwala at the University of Pennsylvania headed the first-of-its-kind study looking at how a regular and consistent yoga practice could help men undergoing prostate cancer treatments, especially with fatigue, bladder issues and sexual health.

Dr. Vapiwala explained, “This wasn’t just saying, okay well, you can do yoga here or there. There’s importance in the frequency of it and all of this is part of the science in how we think it helps people.”

After Frank finished his radiation, he kept exercising and doing yoga and he says he wouldn’t have it any other way.

The Penn researchers are almost finished with the second randomized part of the study to more accurately measure the direct impact of the routine — where half the men do the yoga program during cancer treatments and half don’t.


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