• Women's Cancer Research Foundation

For Ovarian Cancer Survivors, Exercise Can Lift Spirits


A recent study from the Yale School of Public Health reported that routine exercise may reduce the incidence of depression among ovarian cancer survivors. In the study, the researchers evaluated symptoms of depression in 144 ovarian cancer survivors over a period of six months.


Interestingly, in patients who accomplished the intended goal of 150 minutes of moderate-to severe exercise per week, there was an 18% reduction in their depressive symptoms. Consequently, exercise appears to be essential in maintaining a high quality of life for patients who have been diagnosed with ovarian cancer. This study was the first to evaluate the mood-boosting benefit from physical activity for survivors of ovarian cancer.


In the United States, ovarian cancer is the leading cause of death from cancers of the female reproductive system and the fifth-leading cause of cancer-related death in women. In 2020, more than 22,000 cases of ovarian cancer and 14,000 deaths were documented. While there have been recently developed ovarian cancer therapies that have benefitted overall patient survival, no effective screening test exists for the early detection of ovarian cancer. Hence, most cases are still detected at a late stage, rendering an inauspicious prognosis for these patients.


About Women’s Cancer Research Foundation The Women’s Cancer Research Foundation (WCRF) is one of Southern California’s and the nation’s most active research organizations for female cancers. We are dedicated to serving the interests of patients, families, and friends affected by women’s cancers. WCRF partners with physician-scientists nationally to make differences in women’s lives by offering hope, strength, and progress.


Women’s Cancer Research Foundation (WCRF)


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