The Effects of Brief Psychotherapy on Coping with Breast Cancer.
Annual rept. 1 Oct 94-30 Sep 95,
NORTH DAKOTA STATE UNIV FARGO
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The purpose of this study is to test an intervention designed to facilitate the coping efforts of women diagnosed with Stage I or Stage II breast cancer. Our approach is novel because we are testing the effects of brief psychotherapy provided by phone. If this pilot study demonstrates positive effects, subsequent research can test the aspects of brief therapy that are crucial for improving quality of life and also examine different health outcomes. The final sample will include a minimum of 60 women newly diagnosed with breast cancer who will be randomly assigned to either the phone treatment or a standard treatment condition. Treatment participants receive ten therapy phone contacts, with psychology graduate students providing the therapy. Therapy occurs weekly for 1 month and then every-other-week for the next 3 months. During the 30-minute contacts, the students provide cognitive-behavioral treatment e.g., reducing catastrophic thoughts, problem solving, teaching relaxation. Following treatment initiation, we take measures 1 month, 4 months, and 10 months later. Assessment includes measures of coping, distress, quality of life, and use of medical services.
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