Perceptions of masculinity and body image in men with prostate cancer: the role of exercise
The goal of this study was to explore the association between levels of exercise and patterns of masculinity, body image, and quality of life in men undergoing diverse treatment protocols for prostate cancer.
Fifty men with prostate cancer (aged 42–86) completed self-report measures. Self-reported measures included the following: the Godin Leisure Time Exercise Questionnaire (GLTEQ), Masculine Self-esteem Scale (MSES), Personal Attributes Questionnaire (PAQ), Body Image Scale (BIS), and the Functional Assessment of Cancer Therapy–Prostate (FACT-P). Masculinity, body image, and quality of life scores were compared between men obtaining recommended levels of exercise (aerobic or resistance) and those not obtaining recommended level of exercise. Secondary outcomes included the association between masculinity, body image, and quality of life scores as they relate to exercise levels.
There were significantly higher scores of masculinity (p < 0.01), physical well-being (p < 0.05), prostate cancer specific well-being (p < 0.05), and overall quality of life (p < 0.05) in those obtaining at least 150 min of moderate to vigorous aerobic exercise. In the 48% of men who had never received androgen deprivation therapy, significantly higher levels of masculinity, body image, and quality of life were observed in those meeting aerobic guidelines.
Whether treatment includes androgen deprivation or not, men who participate in higher levels of aerobic exercises report higher levels of masculinity, improved body image, and quality of life than those who are inactive. Future longitudinal research is required evaluating exercise level and its effect on masculinity and body image.
KeywordsBody image Masculinity Movement Prostatic neoplasms Oncology Self-concept
Compliance with ethical standards
All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of The University of Calgary Health Research Ethics Board of Alberta (HREBA)–Cancer Committee (HREBA.CC-16-0625_REN1), and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.
Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.
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