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Behavioral program boosts antibody that fights breast cancer

overall immune response is stronger in women who took part in the intervention," Andersen said.

Another encouraging finding was that program participants also received a significantly larger dose of some chemotherapy drugs -- methotrexate and 5-FU -- than did other patients.

Although women in both groups were initially prescribed similar doses of chemotherapy drugs, Andersen said women who didn't receive the intervention were more likely to have their dosage reduced because of severe nausea and vomiting or because they simply refused the treatment.

For example, women in the intervention group who didn't comply with their chemotherapy were about 10 times less likely to say it was because of nausea or vomiting. Overall, about twice as many non-participants refused chemotherapy as did program participants.

"The intervention program helps women tolerate their chemotherapy better so they can stay on track and receive the full dosage," Andersen said.

The program also helped women on a wide variety of psychological and social measures, Andersen said. Compared to other patients, participants reported less depression, more energy and even more social support from their friends.

"We're finding that stress and distress can be significantly reduced in breast-cancer patie
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Contact: Barbara Andersen
614-292-4236
Ohio State University
30-Aug-1999


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