Pal Patient Shares Fitness Tips

How do Appendix Cancer patients prepare for surgery? Some, like Chris, incorporate fitness training, into their pre op plans, to optimize their post op recuperation. Chris shares his suggestions in this article!

Name: Chris
Location: North America
Diagnosis: Mucinous Adenocarcinoma of the Appendix
Age when diagnosed: 33
Treatment: CRS with HIPEC
Surgeon: Dr Armando Sardi

About Chris: Chris is the married father of two pre schoolers. His eldest child was a six-week-old infant when Chris entered the operating room. His youngest child was born two years after his surgery. Chris shares his suggestions for preparing for surgery as follows:

“Prior to my surgery I hired a professional trainer at local gym, to guide me through a personal fitness program. My program included working out four days per week.

As a former high school athlete, I appreciated having a trainer to guide and, when necessary, push me! Many of Pseudomyxoma Peritonei patients wait several weeks, or months, for surgery, therefore, we have time to get into shape! The cost of hiring a personal trainer cost me approximately $1,000 per month. I regretted not asking my surgeon for a prescription for pre-op exercise, as it is possible my health insurance plan would have covered the training, perhaps even if I needed to file an appeal.

Due to the training program, by the time I had surgery, I was in my best shape in ten years! Friends noticed and remarked about how “buffed” I looked! I participated in this fitness plan while receiving systemic chemotherapy. Some weeks, due to the effects of chemotherapy,I delayed my training regimen.

Many of us tend to forget the psychological and emotional benefits of working out! I recently read an article including a longitudinal study that tracked the lives of Harvard graduates. The article noted regular exercise is important for physical health and a long happy life, and serves as a coping mechanism important for maintaining mental health. I can attest the workouts helped remove stress. I remember many days when pumping iron was a metaphor for “beating up” my cancer!

Without insurance coverage, personal fitness training is costly. However, my wife and I had saved money for “rainy days.” When I was diagnosed with cancer, we agreed that the rain had arrived! Spending money on a gym membership, or a trainer, prior to surgery, is worth the investment!”

The articles posted in “PMP Pals” and on are written from the perspective of patients and their family caregivers, and are not intended as a substitute for professional medical or legal advice. Patients should seek the counsel of their licensed professional healthcare providers. Copyright© 2011by Gabriella Graham/PMP Pals’ Network/All rights reserved.