What does the intervention involve?
Once participants have consented to take part in the study, they received an invitation to the online physical activity portal. On the portal they were asked to complete a short physical function test and were invited to join an interactive education session online with an Oncology Specialist physiotherapist. There was be an opportunity during and after this session to ask the physiotherapist questions. Participants did not need to use their full name or have the camera on to take part. They were also sent a full information pack and exercise bands to use during the activity sessions.
Following this education session, participants had access to the on-demand physical activity home exercise sessions. These could be accessed at any time via the online physical activity portal where they could set their own reminders for when they want to do them. The activity sessions were described in the information pack together with how often to do them. They were specifically designed for the needs of patients with colorectal cancer. All sessions could be followed along at home with options offered for different activity abilities. No specialised equipment was required other than the exercise bands we provide and small household objects to use as light weights, such as bottles of water or tins of beans!
Online support was provided throughout the intervention from the oncology specialist physiotherapist.
What else is involved to take part?
Participants were asked to complete measurements at home before starting the intervention programme and during the first two 21-day treatment cycles. These measurements include online questionnaires on how they are feeling, how they rate their ability to do daily activities and their belief in their ability to exercise. Participants were also asked to wear a wrist-worn activity monitor for 7 days before treatment starts and before the following two treatments. This was posted out to participants and can be returned using the pre-paid packaging provided using normal post (so no need to go to the post office). At the end of the study, participants were also asked to complete a short online questionnaire asking for their feedback on the intervention and measurements.
A small group of participants were also invited to take part in an interview with a researcher online or over the telephone to help us learn about their experiences of the intervention. These interviews were optional and participants could take part in the rest of the study and not take part in the interviews if they wish.
What do we hope to find out?
We wish to assess the acceptability and test the delivery of the remote physical activity programme for patients undergoing treatment for colorectal cancer. We are interested in how we can further develop and improve the content and delivery of the intervention and measurements for a future randomised controlled trial.
Who can take part?
We have completed recruitment for CREATE-C. We recruited patients from the outpatient oncology clinic at Addenbrooke’s hospital (Cambridge University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust). Unfortunately, for this study we were not recruiting participants from elsewhere.
Please read the Participant Information Sheet below.