Psychological wellness and health‐related stigma: a pilot study of an acceptance‐focused cognitive behavioural intervention for people with lung cancer

The current study describes the development and acceptability testing of a six session telephone delivered Psychological Wellness intervention for lung cancer patients that addresses health-related stigma as a primary therapy target through the integration of acceptance-focused strategies within a cognitive behavioural framework

S.K. Chambers; B.A. Morris; S. Clutton; E. Foley; L. Giles; P. Schofield; D. O'Connell; J. Dunn


Scholarcy highlights

  • Lung cancer is the most common cancer and the most common cause of cancer death
  • The most common cause of lung cancer is smoking with 15% of lung cancer patients presenting as non-smokers
  • The present study describes the first report, to our knowledge, of a cognitive behavioural intervention applying acceptance-focused strategies to reduce psychological distress in patients with lung cancer and ameliorate the negative effects of health-related stigma in this vulnerable patient group
  • The intervention was telephone delivered in order to reduce barriers to access from physical illness and geographic location
  • For those participants who completed final assessments the intervention was accompanied by improvements in psychological outcomes, with regards to depression where large effect sizes were observed
  • Health-related stigma was reduced, with shame and stigma about having lung cancer most affected. These improvements occurred in the face of a declining quality of life, and suggest that well targeted psychological care with an acceptance focus may be of value for lung cancer patients
  • The testing of this Psychological Wellness intervention in a large-scale randomised controlled trial is the logical step to determine if this intervention is effective in reducing the psychological distress and stigma that is associated with lung cancer

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