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Physical activity barriers and resources among black women with a history of breast and endometrial cancer: a systematic review

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Abstract

Physical inactivity is a significant public health problem among black women. However, there is limited evidence regarding barriers to physical activity and the availability of opportunities to engage in physical activity, specifically for posttreatment black women with a history of cancer.

Purpose

The purpose of this paper was to systematically review, summarize, and synthesize findings on physical activity-related research including barriers, facilitators, and resources for physical activity among posttreatment black women with a history of breast and endometrial cancer.

Methods

We developed a comprehensive search strategy and conducted searches in the following databases: PsycINFO, Web of Science, Cochrane, PubMed, and Sociological Abstracts. Summary measures were described qualitatively (e.g., themes) and quantitatively (e.g., frequencies).

Results

This review identified 35 eligible articles describing 12 intervention and 23 observational studies. We described intervention preferences (e.g., resistance activities), beliefs about physical activity, and benefits of physical activity for quality of life (e.g., improvements in social wellbeing) in black cancer survivors. In addition, very few studies identified barriers to physical activity (n = 7) and focused on increasing physical activity (n = 12) among black women with a history of cancer. The most common reported barriers among the target population were fatigue, lack of social support, weather, illness/health issues, cost, time constraints, living too far away, and inability/unwillingness to obtain physician clearance, whereas the most common facilitators were faith, other health concerns, and social support.

Conclusions/implications

Future studies should target barriers, facilitators, and culturally adapted strategies for physical activity at all levels of influence to develop multi-level interventions to engage and improve physical activity among black women with a history of breast and endometrial cancer.

Protocol registration number:

CRD42018110008

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Burse, N.R., Bhuiyan, N., Mama, S.K. et al. Physical activity barriers and resources among black women with a history of breast and endometrial cancer: a systematic review. J Cancer Surviv 14, 556–577 (2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11764-020-00873-z

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