New research presented at the COSA Conference shows that masculine self-esteem is a key factor influencing the mental wellbeing of men with prostate cancer.
Exercise physiologist Dr Eva Zopf from the Australian Catholic University presented her study of over 330 men with prostate cancer. The study used surveys to uncover the biggest factors influencing men with prostate cancer’s mental health. Their sense of masculinity revealed as having a significant influence alongside physical wellbeing and depression.
Dr Zopf says that the study points to the need for support services more specifically tailored for men with prostate cancer that help them maintain their masculine identity.
“Men are generally less likely to seek mental health support or advice, but are at high risk of depression. This study shows that men with prostate cancer need specifically tailored support that helps them maintain their masculine self-esteem after a diagnosis.
“We know from other research that exercise can play a key role in improving quality of life and overcoming depression. Based on the results of this study we believe that a group-based exercise program may be a supportive service that men with prostate cancer find appealing.