Does mindfulness offer any benefit to cancer patients?

A new Australian study of men with advanced prostate cancer, published in the Journal of Clinical Oncology, suggests mindfulness training offers no benefit in this particular setting | The Conversation

B0005905 Meditation

Image source: Carol Del Angel – Wellcome Images // CC BY-NC-ND 4.0

In cancer, mindfulness-based therapies are often suggested as a supportive care option for patients. Mindfulness as the core component of these two approaches centres around teaching open awareness of the present experience and a focus on behaviour.

The behaviour element encourages the individual to conduct self observation of habits, and to become less reactive to difficult or unpleasant experiences. This is proposed to create a sense of calmness and composure – often referred to as equanimity – about the illness experience.

While mindfulness approaches intuitively seem well matched to the cancer context, to date the research in this area has been limited by variable study quality and a focus on breast cancer patients.

Read the full commentary here

Read the original research article here

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