Department of Psychology and Behavioural Sciences

Internet-delivered Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy for anxiety and depression in cancer survivors: A randomized controlled trial

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OBJECTIVE: Internet-delivered interventions may alleviate distress in cancer survivors with limited access to psychological face-to-face treatment. In collaboration with a group of cancer survivors, we developed and tested the efficacy of a therapist-assisted internet-delivered mindfulness-based cognitive therapy (iMBCT) program for anxiety and depression in cancer survivors.

METHODS: A total of 1282 cancer survivors were screened for anxiety and depression during their routine oncology follow-up; eligible breast (n=137) and prostate cancer (n=13) survivors were randomized to iMBCT or CAU-waitlist. Primary outcomes of anxiety and depression were assessed at baseline, 5 weeks, 10 weeks (post-intervention), and 6 months.

RESULTS: Significant effects were found for both anxiety (Cohen's d=0.45; p=0.017) and depressive symptoms (d=0.42; p=0.024) post-intervention. The effects were maintained at follow-up for anxiety (d=0.40; p=0.029), but not for depressive symptoms (d=0.28; p=0.131).

CONCLUSIONS: Our preliminary findings suggest iMBCT to be a helpful intervention for cancer survivors suffering from symptoms of anxiety. Further studies on the efficacy for symptoms of depression are needed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)68-75
Number of pages8
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2020

Bibliographical note

© 2019 The Authors. Psycho-Oncology published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

    Research areas

  • anxiety, breast cancer, cancer, cancer survivors, cognitive therapy, depressive symptoms, internet, mindfulness, oncology, prostate cancer

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