Behavioural Medicine Lab

Health outcomes for young cancer survivors

The Dalhousie Behavioural Medicine Lab is located within the School of Health and Human Performance, Kinesiology division, with an "exer-gaming" facility located in the pediatric hematology/oncology unit of the IWK children's hospital and another in the Kinesiology suite at Dalplex.

Under the direction of Dr. Melanie Keats, our primary focus is on developing a better understanding of the impact of physical activity on cancer-related health outcomes. To that end, we investigate the prevalence, determinants, and activity preferences of childhood and young adult cancer survivors, and exploring the effectiveness of novel interventions designed to promote physical activity across the cancer continuum.

Ongoing research

  • The effect of active gaming on exercise participation and adherence in young adult survivors of paediatric cancers.
  • The environmental influences on physical activity behaviours in breast cancer patients.
  • Facilitating health behaviour change in young adult cancer survivors: Comparing physical activity guidebooks.

The MILESTONES exer-gaming facility

MILESTONES has been developed in response to the growing burden associated with childhood and young adult cancers in Canada. The primary goal of the research is to optimize the quality of life of young cancer survivors through better understanding how physical activity affects health outcomes.

A unique melding of traditional physical activity (e.g., cycling) with interactive gaming technologies (e.g., PS3, Wii), it is hoped that MILESTONES can help increase the motivation of young cancer survivors to stay active and maintain optimal health. 

Find out more about the research being done in the Behavioural Medicine Lab.