Lung cancer researcher receives prestigious WA award

Man smiling leaning against balcony railing
Dr Vinicius Cavalheri, South Metropolitan Health Service Allied Health Research Director
May 19, 2020

South Metropolitan Health Service Allied Health Research Director, Dr Vinicius Cavalheri, has been jointly awarded the Cancer Council WA Early Career Cancer Researcher of the Year for 2020.

Through his work at Curtin University, Dr Cavalheri published two papers within the past 18 months which significantly advanced the understanding of the benefits of exercise in patients following lung cancer surgery and in those receiving treatment for advanced lung cancer.

Dr Cavalheri received $5,000 as part of the award which is supported by Friends of the Cancer Council WA.

“As a researcher it’s always an honour to be recognised for the work you do, particularly when you know that work is contributing towards positive outcomes for patients,” Dr Cavalheri said.

In collaboration with researchers from the Netherlands, Brazil and Belgium, Dr Cavalheri’s study in patients following lung cancer surgery demonstrated that exercise increased fitness and muscle strength, improved quality of life and decreased breathlessness.

His study in people receiving treatment for advanced lung cancer, which was a collaboration with researchers from Edith Cowan University and the University of Western Australia, demonstrated that exercise improves or avoids the decline in fitness levels and quality of life.

“Both studies promote the importance of exercise as part of lung cancer care and it is hoped they will have the ability to positively influence clinical practice,” he said.

“Lung cancer remains a leading cause of death in Australia so as researchers we need to continue making progress to ensure patients have access to the best care possible.”

Late last year Dr Cavalheri also received the prize for Best Abstract in Physiotherapy at the European Respiratory Society International Congress in Madrid, the largest respiratory medicine conference in the world.

You can find out more about Dr Cavalheri’s research here (external site).

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