Ways to Prevent Depression in Breast Cancer


The diagnosis of breast cancer and the treatments applied after it can cause depression in patients. However, according to a recent study, the risk of depression can be reduced with mindfulness and meditation training in patients.

Anadolu Medical Center Medical Oncology Specialist Prof. Dr. Serdar Turhal said, "The results of this study are also very important, considering that the diagnosis and treatment of breast cancer in patients under the age of 50 is highly likely to cause depression."

Anadolu Medical Center Medical Oncology Specialist Prof. Dr. Serdar Turhal explained the details of the research as follows: “247 of the breast cancer patients received additional awareness training, 85 of them were in the control group, and another 81 of them received only survival training. The average age of the patients is 81, 45 percent are married and 75 percent are working people. 68 percent of the patients underwent mastectomy (complete removal of the breast), 56 percent received chemotherapy, 57 percent radiotherapy and anti-hormone therapy. "

Mindfulness training reduces the risk of depression

Underlining that patients are offered a program from 2 hours to 6 weeks a week, Medical Oncology Specialist Prof. Dr. Serdar Turhal said, “These patients were given a training by oncology nurses. During these awareness trainings, what awareness is, how to live with pain and difficult feelings, and ways to cope with these difficulties were explained, and separate training sessions were held. In the survival training, basic information about breast cancer was given as basic information about quality of life, physical activity, healthy diet, familial cancer risk, life and work balance, menopause, sexual life and body image. At the end of this training, it was observed that while 50 percent of the patients initially had symptoms of depression, these rates decreased to 20 percent in both the mindfulness training group and the survival training group. In other words, as the awareness about the disease increases, we see that the risk of depression decreases when psychological support is taken ”.

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