Effects of supportive-expressive discussion groups on loneliness, hope and quality of life in breast cancer survivors: a randomized control trial

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Abstract

Purpose

Evaluation of the effect of supportive expressive discussion groups on loneliness, hope and quality of life in breast cancer survivors.

Methods

A randomized control trial including breast cancer patients who had completed chemotherapy and randomly allocated into two groups: intervention (n = 41) and control (n = 40). The intervention consisted of twelve weekly 90-min sessions for groups of six to eight breast cancer survivors. Data were obtained pre-to -post the intervention and at 8-week follow-up. The data were analyzed using a repeated-measures analysis of variance (ANOVA).

Results

The findings revealed a significant reduction in loneliness scores (F = 69.85, p < 0.001), promotion in total hope (F = 20.8, p < 0.05) and enhancement in quality of life from pre- to post-intervention, and then over the 8-week follow-up period in the intervention group, while scores of control participants did not show this pattern during the study. The strongest effects were found for global quality of life (effect size) = 0.59), for future perspectives (effect size = 0.51), emotional functioning (effect size = 0.35) and social functioning (effect size = 0.31).

Conclusion

The intervention was effective on loneliness, hope and quality of life in the intervention group. The intervention needs further evaluation in a larger study and with other cancer types. Copyright © 2016 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

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