FRIDAY, Jan. 4, 2019 (HealthDay News) — A psychoeducational intervention does not improve anxiety or body image but is still considered important among women with breast cancer, according to a study recently published in Reviews on Recent Clinical Trials.

Federica Andreis, from Fondazione Poliambulanza in Brescia, Italy, and colleagues examined 97 patients with breast cancer with no recurrences or metastases who participated in 13 psychoeducation groups. Each group was organized into eight meetings, three led by a psychologist and one each with an oncologist, surgeon, obstetrician/gynecologist, physical therapist, and nutritionist. Patients were assessed with the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale (HADS) and the Body Image Scale.

The researchers found that the brief psychoeducational group intervention had no significant effect on anxiety or body image; however, there was a statistical difference in the HADS depression test at first evaluation and in the final meeting. The participants reported that the group was an important intervention in their life.

“In the future, the effectiveness of psychoeducational interventions should consider not only the decline in certain psychological symptoms but also the evaluation of how participation in a group allows the patient to integrate the disease into her everyday life and to handle the critical aspects that are part of the disease,” the authors write.

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