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Engaging in exercise is generally beneficial for overall health and well-being, even for individuals with pseudomyxoma peritonei (PMP). Exercise can help improve cardiovascular fitness, strengthen muscles, boost immune function, enhance mood, and promote a sense of well-being. Exercising properly shouldn’t increase the risk of PMP spread. In fact, exercise can be beneficial for patients with PMP in several ways:

  • Exercise can help maintain a healthy weight, which is important for PMP patients. Excess body weight has been linked to worse outcomes for some cancers.
  • Exercise may boost the immune system, which could potentially help fight the cancer. Even light to moderate exercise can improve immune function.
  • Exercise may reduce inflammation, which is important for PMP patients. Chronic inflammation has been linked to cancer progression.
  • Exercise has been shown to improve the quality of life and mood of cancer patients in general. This is also relevant for PMP patients undergoing intensive treatments.
  • Exercise increases endorphins and serotonin in the body, which can help reduce some of the discomfort associated with PMP.

However, it is important to exercise properly to minimize risks:

  • Start slow and build up gradually.
  • Don’t overexert yourself initially.
  • Choose low-impact activities like walking, swimming, or cycling instead of high-impact exercises.
  • Listen to your body and stop if you experience any pain or discomfort.
  • Stay well hydrated during and after exercise.

As long as you exercise in moderation according to your physical capabilities and follow your doctor’s recommendations, it is unlikely to increase the risk of PMP spread. In fact, regular exercise provides health benefits for PMP patients.

So while rest is important as well, staying reasonably active through moderate exercise may help you feel better and cope with PMP. Just make sure to start slowly, choose the right activities, and pay attention to how your body responds. With proper precautions, exercise is generally safe and encouraged for PMP patients.

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Written by: the Pseudomyxoma Survivor editorial team

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