Galway, K., Black, A., Cantwell, M., Cardwell, C.R., Mills, M., & Donnelly, M. (2012). Psychosocial interventions to improve quality of life and emotional wellbeing for recently diagnosed cancer patients. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews, 11, CD007064.doi:10.1002/14651858.CD007064.pub2
To assess the effects of psychosocial interventions on quality of life and mood symptoms in patients diagnosed with cancer within the past 12 months
Multiple phases of care
Findings suggest that psychosocial interventions have a positive impact on quality of life among newly diagnosed patients with cancer. Psychoeducational interventions and nurse-delivered interventions demonstrate a small significant effect across combined trials. Overall evidence does not indicate that individual psychosocial interventions are effective at improving the mood- and quality-of-life–related symptoms of patients newly diagnosed with cancer.
A small number of studies in meta-analysis related to mood changes. Effect sizes in mood changes were small, and study samples comprised high heterogeneity, demonstrating that findings should be interpreted with some caution in terms of clinical relevance.
The fact that nurse-delivered psychosocial interventions demonstrated a positive and statistically significant effect is promising, although the effect size was small. This finding provides some support for interventions delivered by nurses rather than by other healthcare professionals. Other studies have reported this finding. Nurses may be uniquely positioned to provide such interventions: Their knowledge base includes both physiologic and psychosocial components of the cancer experience, and individual interventions can simultaneously and effectively address physical and psychosocial symptom management. The findings of this study provide general support for the effectiveness of psychoeducational interventions.