Effects of therapeutic exercise in paediatric survivors of childhood posterior fossa brain tumours.


The problem

Over 60% of childhood brain cancers are located in the lower region of the brain known as the ‘posterior fossa’. Sadly, surviving posterior fossa tumours often comes at the cost of decreased physical functioning and significant neurocognitive impairment. Research has shown that children with other types of cancer who participate in therapeutic exercise programs show significant improvements in muscular strength, cognitive function and cardiorespiratory fitness.  However, there has been no research into the impact for children with posterior fossa tumours.

The research

Prof Stewart Trost will lead a randomised controlled trial to investigate whether a 12-week therapeutic exercise program improves cardiorespiratory fitness, functional strength, cognitive function and quality of life in patients with posterior fossa brain tumours. The project will involve researchers and clinicians, including experts in paediatric exercise science and neuro-oncology at Queensland Children’s Hospital, plus the paediatric exercise testing laboratory at the Centre for Children’s Health Research.

The potential outcomes

It is expected this research will translate into ways to reduce the risk for chronic, disabling conditions such as obesity, cardiometabolic disorders and poor psychosocial functioning in childhood brain cancer survivors.

Centre for Child and Adolescent Brain Cancer Research

Funding / Grants

  • Children’s Hospital Foundation

Chief Investigators