Bewegung & Krebs

Physical performance and psychosocial status in lung cancer patients: results from a pilot study

In cooperation with the Thoraxklinik-Heidelberg at Heidelberg University Hospital and the Institute of Sports and Sports Science (Heidelberg University).

Principal investigators:
Prof. Dr. Michael Thomas, Dr. Simone Hummler, PD Dr. Joachim Wiskemann

Co-Principal investigators:
Prof. Dr. Dirk Jäger, Prof. Dr. Cornelia Ulrich, Dr. Martin Zoz


Part I of the study started in February 2011. Up to 40 patients were recruited. The pilot study had the aim to receive information on patient´s quality of life and physical performance. Therefore patients - irrespective of their stage of the disease - had to fill out standardized questionnaires (FACT-L, MFI, PHQ-9). In addition physical fitness was assessed by the 6 minute walk test (6MWT, endurance performance) and handheld dynamometry (isometric strength performance). Furthermore, spirometry data was collected.Publications (Part I):

Hummler S, Thomas M, Hofmann B, Gärtner P, Zoz M, Huber G, Ulrich CM, Wiskemann J (2014). Physical and psychosocial performance status of lung cancer patients: results from a pilot study. Oncology Research and Treatment, 37(1-2): 36-41.

In Part II a multimodal exercise intervention was performed consisting of endurance combined with resistance training. Patients started to train during the inpatient setting (5x/week) and continued the exercising during the outpatient period (3x/week). The overall duration of the exercise program was 8 weeks. During the inpatient stay the exercise training was supervised by study personal and by a clinic physiotherapist. Patients were randomized to the exercise training only or randomized to exercise training plus general activity measurement via pedometers. This was done to find out whether patients with a pedometer increase their physical activity. Part II of the study started in April 2011 and enrolled 40 patients with non-small lung cancer (stage II-IV).

Publications (Part II):

Kuehr L*, Wiskemann J*, Abel U, Ulrich CM, Hummler S, Thomas M (2014). Exercise in patients with Non Small Cell Lung Cancer. Medicine & Science in Sport and Exercise, 46(4): 656-63. *shared first authorship

For Part III a randomized controlled trial is planned to further investigate the effect of exercise training in advanced lung cancer patients.


PD Dr. Joachim Wiskemann
Phone: +49 6221 56-5904

Dr. Simone Hummler
Phone: +49 6221 39-68074