Finding out what works
The men in the intervention group reported a significant overall improvement in fatigue levels, its severity and their ability to manage their symptoms. They also reported significant improvements in social functioning. Results for the intervention group included:
- global fatigue levels significantly reduced (p=.002)
- fatigue severity significantly reduced (p=.015)
- fatigue management (coping with fatigue in daily life) significantly improved (p=.006)
- social role functioning significantly improved (p=.008)
- fatigue symptoms significantly improved (p=.029).
The control group experienced no improvement in fatigue and a worsening in physical functioning (p=.011).
After this pilot, The Movember Foundation funded the inclusion of a full Fatigue Support Service as a part of Prostate Cancer UK’s Specialist Nurses’ offer in February 2013. Since then, we've supported around 180 men through the programme. We’re now carrying out longer-term follow up of men who benefited from this programme to discover whether the improvements are sustained. Our initial findings are very positive.
We’re also working to increase men’s awareness of the service, because so far we’ve only reached a tiny proportion of the estimated 200,000 men struggling to get through their days because of prostate cancer related fatigue: that's two thirds of the 300,000 men living with prostate cancer (Macmillan 2015).