Greek Traditional Dance Teaching Programs: Effects on the Quality of Life of Women who Survived Breast Cancer

Introduction: Both in developed and developing countries breast cancer is a major research subject concerning prolepsis, diagnosis and treatment, as well as post-hospital care of the patients. The life quality of the women diagnosed with breast cancer during and after its treatment has become an important issue of scientific studies relating both to the physical and the psychological recovery. Previous researches have mentioned the positive influence of physical exercise and dance on the physical condition and functionality, reduction of pain and fatigue, as well as on the improvement of various life quality indexes of breast cancer patients. Objective: The purpose of the study was to investigate whether participation in an intervention program of Greek traditional dances could improve the quality of life of women who survived breast cancer. Material and Method: The participants of the research were 30 women aged 48-59 (Μ =53.97 years) who survived breast cancer. After drawing lots, 20 of them became the experimental group and the remaining 10 the control group. The women of the experimental group participated in Greek traditional dance lessons, while the women of the control group did not participate in any kind of organized physical activity. The data collection was carried out using the Greek version of EuroQol 5 Dimensions 5 Levels (EQ-5D-5L). The statistical analyses undertaken in this study were: a. t-test for independent sample and b. Repeated Measures ANOVA. Results: The analysis of the results revealed a significant statistical improvement in the quality of life level: “mobility”: initial measurement M=3.15, SD=0.37, p<0.001 and final measurement: Μ=2.00, SD =0.32, p<0.001, “self-care”: initial measurement M=3.50, SD=0.37, p<0.001 and final measurement: Μ=1.75, SD=0.32, p<0.001, “usual activities”: initial measurement M=3.50, SD=0.51, p<0.001 and final measurement: Μ=2.10, SD=0.52, p<0.001, “pain/discomfort”: initial measurement M=3.60, SD=0.50, p<0.001 and final measurement: Μ=2.05, SD=0.48, p<0.001, “anxiety/depression”: initial measurement M=3.35, SD=0.49, p<0.001 and final measurement: Μ=1.40, SD=0.51, p<0.001, while the control group did not show any important improvement. Conclusion: Participating in interventional traditional dance lessons contributes positively to reducing the levels of all the factors that synthesize the quality of life related to health. The results of the study indicate that breast cancer patients may benefit from the traditional dance exercise interventions.