The built environment and cancer survivorship: A scoping review.

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There are more than 32 million cancer survivors worldwide. The built environment is one of the contextual factors that may influence cancer survivorship. However, studies investigating the interdisciplinary field of the built environment and cancer survivorship are lacking.


To conduct a systematic review of the existing literature regarding the relationship between the built environment and cancer survivorship, identify any knowledge gaps, and recommend future research directions.


A systematic literature search was performed by searching OVID Medline, Embase, CINAHL, and Web of Science Core Collection.


Of 4235 unique records identified, 26 studies met eligibility criteria. Neighborhood walkability and greenness were the most examined built environment characteristics among the included studies. Walkability was found to be associated with various cancer survivorship experience, including increased levels of physical activity, lowered body mass index, and improved quality of life. The association between greenness and cancer survivorship outcomes were inconsistent across the included studies. Additionally, studies have reported the relationship between light and noise pollution and sleep among cancer survivors. Regarding blue space, in one qualitative study, breast cancer survivors brought up the healing properties of water.


Our scoping review demonstrated a breadth of current cancer survivorship research in the field of neighborhood walkability and greenness, but fewer studies detailing other aspects of the built environment as defined by this review, such as light pollution, noise pollution, and blue space. We identified future research directions for those interested in this interdisciplinary field, which can provide insights for urban planners and policy makers on how to best leverage the built environment to promote the health and wellbeing of cancer survivors.

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The built environment and cancer survivorship: A scoping review.
Chen N, Mita C, Chowdhury-Paulino IM, Shreves AH, Hu CR, Yi L, James P