Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Problem-solving training helps mothers cope with child's cancer diagnosis

Date:
February 12, 2013
Source:
University of Colorado Denver
Summary:
A multi-site clinical trial of BRIGHT Ideas problem-solving training shows durable benefits in mothers of children diagnosed with cancer.

"Earlier research shows that a mom is the keystone of a family. After a child's cancer diagnosis, if mom is stressed and not coping, you see the effects on the marriage and on siblings as well," says Diane Fairclough, DrPH, MSPH, CU Cancer Center investigator and director of the Analytics Core at the Colorado Health Outcomes Center.

Related Articles


Support the mother and you support the family, including the ill child.

A previous clinical trial had shown the effectiveness of the Bright IDEAS problem-solving skills training, and the current study hoped to disentangle the benefits of the training from the simple, potentially powerful effect of a mother's interaction with a compassionate listener. Was it Bright IDEAS specifically or the byproducts of compassion and understanding once a week for eight weeks that led to mothers' gains?

The results of this multi-site, 309-mother study are interesting: immediately after Bright IDEAS training, mothers showed the same gains as with another intervention called nondirective support, which is effectively compassionate listening. But three months later, the gains from Bright IDEAS remained, while the gains from an understanding ear evaporated. In fact, at the three-month mark, the benefits from problem-solving skills training were growing -- not only were mothers more adept problem-solvers, but this increased ability transferred to ever-more gains in mood, decreased anxiety and fewer symptoms of posttraumatic stress.

You know the phrase, If you give a man a fish you feed him for a day, but if you teach a man to fish, you feed him for a lifetime. In this study, it was as if Bright IDEAS taught mothers to fish -- not only helping mothers, but helping mothers learn to help themselves.

"I've been a cancer patient myself," Fairclough says, "and I think the most stressing thing is that there's a sense that the disease has taken over your life. It defines your schedule, your family vacations, you can't change employers because of insurance concerns. I think problem-solving skills training helps mothers pull back some control after their child's diagnosis. It makes things seem manageable and gives parents a sense they're not just helpless observers."

The group also includes members from the University of Rochester, M.D. Anderson Cancer Center, University of Texas El Paso, Miller Children's Hospital Long Beach, Children's Hospital Los Angeles, Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh, and St. Jude Children's Research Hospital. To date, the training has required eight weekly individual meetings between a mother and her trainer. This approach, while successful, is resource intensive. This past summer, the research group received funding from the National Cancer Institute to develop a web-based version to make Bright IDEAS available anytime, wherever a parent or other caregiver has access to the Internet.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Colorado Denver. The original article was written by Garth Sundem. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. O. J. Z. Sahler, M. J. Dolgin, S. Phipps, D. L. Fairclough, M. A. Askins, E. R. Katz, R. B. Noll, R. W. Butler. Specificity of Problem-Solving Skills Training in Mothers of Children Newly Diagnosed With Cancer: Results of a Multisite Randomized Clinical Trial. Journal of Clinical Oncology, 2013; DOI: 10.1200/JCO.2011.39.1870

Cite This Page:

University of Colorado Denver. "Problem-solving training helps mothers cope with child's cancer diagnosis." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 12 February 2013. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/02/130212141037.htm>.
University of Colorado Denver. (2013, February 12). Problem-solving training helps mothers cope with child's cancer diagnosis. ScienceDaily. Retrieved December 17, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/02/130212141037.htm
University of Colorado Denver. "Problem-solving training helps mothers cope with child's cancer diagnosis." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/02/130212141037.htm (accessed December 17, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

UN: Up to One Million Facing Hunger in Ebola-Hit Countries

UN: Up to One Million Facing Hunger in Ebola-Hit Countries

AFP (Dec. 17, 2014) Border closures, quarantines and crop losses in West African nations battling the Ebola virus could lead to as many as one million people going hungry, UN food agencies said on Wednesday. Duration: 00:52 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
When You Lose Weight, This Is Where The Fat Goes

When You Lose Weight, This Is Where The Fat Goes

Newsy (Dec. 17, 2014) Can fat disappear into thin air? New research finds that during weight loss, over 80 percent of a person's fat molecules escape through the lungs. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Flu Outbreak Closing Schools in Ohio

Flu Outbreak Closing Schools in Ohio

AP (Dec. 17, 2014) A wave of flu illnesses has forced some Ohio schools to shut down over the past week. State officials confirmed one pediatric flu-related death, a 15-year-old girl in southern Ohio. (Dec. 17) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Feeling Young Might Mean A Longer Life Span

Feeling Young Might Mean A Longer Life Span

Newsy (Dec. 16, 2014) A study published in JAMA shows that people who feel younger than their chronological age might actually live longer than those who feel old. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins