Comparative Study

| Published: December 26, 2018

Adjuvant Psychological Therapy for Alexithymia in Women with Breast Cancer

Sharon Ruth ,

Clinical Psychologist, Department of Psychiatry, Bangalore Medical College and Research Institute, Bangalore, India Google Scholar More about the auther

Padmakumari. P

Associate Professor, Department of Psychology, Christ University, Bangalore, India Google Scholar More about the auther

DIP: 18.01.088/20180604

DOI: 10.25215/0604.088


Many psychological factors play an important role in diagnosis and treatment of cancer. One of the reasons could be due to deficits in emotional processing and affect regulation. These deficits could lead to an inability to verbalize and identify emotions which is known as alexithymia. To this end the objective of the study was to examine the effectiveness of adjuvant psychological therapy in breast cancer in terms of alexithymia (within the intervention group and between the two groups). The study consisted of 20 patients in the intervention and control groups each. They were administered the following scale namely, Toronto Alexithymia Scale (TAS-20). Results indicated that between the intervention and control groups, on total alexithymia, difficulty describing feelings and externally oriented thinking there was a statistically significant difference between the intervention and control groups. On the subscale of difficulty identifying feelings there were no statistically significant differences between the two groups. Within the intervention group too, significant differences were found on alexithymia and subscales both, following therapy and at follow up. This study reveals the effectiveness of psychological interventions in those with breast cancer. It is imperative that psychological care is the need of the hour in oncology settings.

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ISSN 2348-5396

ISSN 2349-3429

DIP: 18.01.088/20180604

DOI: 10.25215/0604.088

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Published in   Volume 06, Issue 4, October-December, 2018