Mindfulness and Its Efficacy for Psychological and Biological Responses in Women with Breast Cancer

July 27, 2017 by School of Medicine Webmaster

Investigators in Sweden conducted a study of mindfulness-based stress reduction (MBSR) among women with breast cancer. The primary purpose was to determine the impact of MBSR on mood disorders in these women. They also assessed symptom experience, health status, coping capacity, mindfulness, posttraumatic growth, and immune status. A total of 166 women with breast cancer were assigned to one of three groups: traditional MBSR (8 weekly group sessions of MBSR), active controls (self‐instructing MBSR) and non‐MBSR. The results provided evidence for beneficial effects of traditional MBSR on psychological and biological responses. Women in this MBSR group experienced significant improvements in depression, distress, symptom burden, and overall mental health. Furthermore, MBSR facilitated coping capacity as well as mindfulness and posttraumatic growth. Significant benefits in immune response within the MBSR group and between groups were observed. The authors concluded that traditional MBSR has the potential for alleviating depression and for enhancing coping capacity, mindfulness and posttraumatic growth, and has a beneficial effect on immune function which may improve breast cancer survivorship.

Cancer Medicine 2017;6:1108–1122

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