Medline: 3966583

American Journal of Psychiatry 142(1): 22-27, 1985.

Psychotherapy during radiotherapy: effects on emotional and physical distress.

Forester B, Kornfeld DS, Fleiss JL


The authors determined the effects of ongoing weekly individual psychotherapy on the symptoms of patients undergoing a 6-week course of radiotherapy for cancer. Forty-eight patients were given weekly psychotherapy sessions for 10 weeks; another 52 patients served as control subjects. A statistically significant reduction was found in both emotional and "physical" manifestations of distress in the patients receiving psychotherapy compared with the control group. This was true regardless of gender, ward or private patient status, or knowledge of diagnosis. Patient gender and knowledge of diagnosis did affect the pattern and magnitude of the response to psychotherapy.

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