Inspiratory muscle training (IMT) in conjunction with an exercise training program may reduce dyspnea in breast cancer survivors, according to a study published in Archives of Rehabilitation Research and Clinical Translation.

This double-blind, parallel group, randomized controlled trial analyzed women with breast cancer who completed adjuvant treatment and subsequently entered cancer rehabilitation. Inclusion criteria were defined as decreased inspiratory muscle strength and/or symptoms of dyspnea. The study comprised 20 patients, of which 10 were assigned to an intervention group (receiving 3 months of exercise with IMT) and 10 were assigned to a control group (3 months of exercise with sham-IMT).

Results show the intervention group achieved a larger reduction in dyspnea compared with the control group, as well as many improvements in dyspnea during daily life. The researchers noted this study was limited due to the small sample size, but they feel larger multicenter studies should be performed to clarify the findings.

Reference: Dahhak A, Devoogdt N, Langer D. Adjunctive inspiratory muscle training during a rehabilitation program in patients with breast cancer: an exploratory double-blind, randomized, controlled pilot study. Arch Rehabil Res Clin Transl. 2022;4(2):100196. doi:10.1016/j.arrct.2022.100196