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Am J Phys Med Rehabil. 2018 Dec 13. doi: 10.1097/PHM.0000000000001108. [Epub ahead of print]

Fit4SurgeryTV at-home prehabilitation for frail elderly planned for colorectal cancer surgery: a pilot study.

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Department of surgery, Academic Medical Center, Amsterdam, The Netherlands.
Department of surgery, Gelre Hospitals, Apeldoorn, The Netherlands.
Department of medicine, University of Groningen, University Medical Center Groningen, Groningen, The Netherlands.
Department of surgery, OLVG Hospitals, Amsterdam, The Netherlands.
Department of surgery, Meander Medical Center, Amersfoort, The Netherlands.
Department of geriatric medicine, Gelre Hospitals, Apeldoorn, The Netherlands.



The preoperative phase is a potential window of opportunity. Although frail elderly patients are known to be more prone to postoperative complications, they are often not considered capable of accomplishing a full prehabilitation program. The aim of this study was to assess the feasibility of Fit4SurgeryTV, an at-home prehabilitation program specifically designed for frail elderly with colorectal cancer (CRC).


The Fit4SurgeryTV program consisted of a daily elderly-adapted computer-supported strength training workout and two protein-rich meals. Frail patients ≥70 years with CRC were included. The program was considered feasible if 80% of the patients would be able to complete 70% of the program.


Fourteen patients (median age 79, 5 males) participated. At baseline, 86% patients were physically impaired and 64% were at risk for malnourishment. Median duration of the program was 26 days. The program was feasible as patients followed the exercises for 6/7 (86%) days and prepared the recipes 5/7 (71%) days per week. Patients specifically appreciated at-home exercises.


This study showed that at-home prehabilitation in frail elderly with CRC is feasible. As a result, patients might be fitter for surgery and might recover faster. The perioperative period could serve as a pivotal time point in reverting complications of immobility.

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