Title

Education and peer discussion group interventions and adjustment to breast cancer.

Date of Original Version

4-1999

Type

Article

Abstract or Description

BACKGROUND:

We report a clinical trial comparing the effectiveness of education-based and peer discussion-based group interventions on adjustment to breast cancer.

METHODS:

Women with stage I, II, or III breast cancer (n = 312) were randomly assigned to 1 of 4 group conditions: control, education, peer discussion, or education plus peer discussion (combination). Seven groups (each comprising 8-12 women) were conducted in each of the 4 conditions (28 groups total). Adjustment was measured before the intervention, immediately after the intervention, and 6 months after the intervention.

RESULTS:

Consistently positive effects on adjustment were seen in the education groups both immediately following and 6 months after the intervention. There were no benefits of participation in peer discussion groups, and some indications of adverse effects on adjustment at both follow-up examinations. The effects could be explained by changes in self-esteem, body image, and intrusive thoughts about the illness.

CONCLUSIONS:

Education-based group interventions facilitated the initial adjustment of women diagnosed with early stage breast cancer. There was no evidence of benefits from peer discussion group interventions.

DOI

10.1001/archpsyc.56.4.340

 

Published In

Arch Gen Psychiatry. , 56, 4, 340-347.