Hypnosis Therapy Shown to Decrease Fatigue Levels in Breast Cancer Patients

Researchers at Mount Sinai find cognitive behavioral therapy plus hypnosis (CBTH) reduces fatigue in radiotherapy breast cancer patients

Released: 20-Feb-2014 9:00 AM EST
Source Newsroom: Mount Sinai School of Medicine
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Citations Journal of Clinical Oncology

Newswise — (New York, NY –February 20, 2014) – Breast cancer patients receiving radiotherapy showed decreased fatigue as a result of cognitive behavioral therapy plus hypnosis (CBTH), according to a study recently published in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

The study, titled, “Randomized Controlled Trial of a Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy Plus Hypnosis Intervention to Control Fatigue in Patients Undergoing Radiotherapy for Breast Cancer,” was led by Guy Montgomery, PhD, Associate Professor and Director of the Integrative Behavioral Medicine Program in the Department of Oncological Sciences, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai. The results of a randomized controlled trial of 200 patients showed that the treatment group had significantly less fatigue than a control group both during treatment and for up to six months afterwards.

The average patient in a treatment group had less fatigue than 79 percent of patients in a control group at the end of radiotherapy. Six months after the end of radiotherapy, the average patient in a treatment group had less fatigue than 95 percent of patients in a control group. “These results support CBTH as an evidence-based complementary intervention to control fatigue in patients undergoing radiotherapy for breast cancer,” said Dr. Montgomery. “CBTH works to reduce fatigue for patients who have few other treatment options. It is also noninvasive, has no adverse side-effects, and its beneficial effects persist long after the last intervention.”

Additionally, patients also reported that participating in CBTH was relaxing and helpful. “This study is important because it shows a new intervention that helps to improve patients’ quality of life during taxing course of breast cancer radiotherapy and for long after,” said Montgomery.

The study was partially funded by grants from the National Cancer Institute and the American Cancer Society.

About the Mount Sinai Health System

The Mount Sinai Health System is an integrated health system committed to providing distinguished care, conducting transformative research, and advancing biomedical education. Structured around seven member hospital campuses and a single medical school, the Health System has an extensive ambulatory network and a range of inpatient and outpatient services—from community-based facilities to tertiary and quaternary care.

The System includes approximately 6,600 primary and specialty care physicians, 12-minority-owned free-standing ambulatory surgery centers, over 45 ambulatory practices throughout the five boroughs of New York City, Westchester, and Long Island, as well as 31 affiliated community health centers. Physicians are affiliated with the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, which is ranked among the top 20 medical schools both in National Institutes of Health funding and by U.S. News & World Report.
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