Aim: Exercise can be an effective treatment for cancer-related fatigue, but exercise is not prescribed for many cancer patients. Our specific aim was to compare usual care and a tablet-based fatigue education and prescription program for effects on level of fatigue (primary outcome) and satisfaction with fatigue and amount of exercise (secondary outcomes). Methods: In a four-week pretest/posttest randomized study, 279 patients with cancer completed a touch screen fatigue assessment and daily paper-based activity logs. The experimental group also had access to FatigueUCope, a tablet-based multimedia education intervention focused on exercise as therapy for fatigue. Results: In total, 94% of intervention group accessed FatigueUCope. Controlling for baseline fatigue, compared to the usual-care group, the experimental group reported lower fatigue scores (P =.02). Neither satisfaction with fatigue nor exercise level was significantly different between groups, but not all activity logs were returned. None of the patients reported adverse effects. Conclusion: Objective indicators of exercise are warranted in future studies to examine whether exercise is indeed the mechanism of the FatigueUCope effect and determine the clinical utility of this intervention. This brief, engaging tablet-based multimedia education and prescription program has promise to help patients recognize the benefits of exercise to manage cancer-related fatigue.
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