The researchers found that general quality of life and measurements of side effects often experienced by prostate cancer patients - including fatigue, sexual health and urinary incontinence - were stable throughout a course of outpatient radiation therapy among the men participating in an intensive yoga programme.

"Data have consistently shown declines in these important measures among prostate cancer patients undergoing cancer therapy without any structured fitness interventions, so the stable scores seen with our yoga programme are really good news," said Neha Vapiwala, associate professor at Abramson Cancer Centre, University of Pennsylvania in the US.

The possible explanation for the benefits of yoga seen in the study stems from physiologic data demonstrating its ability to help reduce cancer-related fatigue and to strengthen pelvic floor muscles and increase blood flow.

Erectile dysfunction, urinary incontinence, and general quality of life scores demonstrated steady trends.

The findings were presented at the Society of Integrative Oncology's 12th International Conference in Boston.

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