The Effects of Brief Psychotherapy of Coping with Breast Cancer
Final rept. 1 Oct 94-31 Oct 97
NORTH DAKOTA STATE UNIV FARGO
Pagination or Media Count:
The purpose of this study was to test an intervention designed to facilitate the coping efforts of women diagnosed with Stage I or Stage II breast cancer. Our novel approach tested the effects of brief psychotherapy provided by phone. The final sample included 61 women newly diagnosed with breast cancer who were randomly assigned to either the phone treatment or a standard treatment condition. Treatment participants received ten therapy phone contacts with psychology graduate students. Therapy focused on cognitive behavioral treatment and occurred weekly for 1 month and then every other week for the next 3 months. Distress and quality of life measures were collected at pretest, after treatment, and at a 10 month follow up. The best predictor of distress was coping style Women who reported more avoidant coping were more distressed. In general, treatment women were satisfied with therapy and felt that they could openly discuss important issues. Therapy outcome data showed no advantage for quality of life outcomes. Treatment women did report improvements in terms of distress, but the differences were significant only for anxiety and confusion. Phone therapy is acceptable, but it may not be powerful enough to strongly influence important outcomes.
- Medicine and Medical Research