Toward a more effective use of group interventions with cancer patients

Joseph Robert Rainville (1989)

Group interventions have been used to assist cancer patients recover from the negative psychological effects of the illness. In this dissertation, relevant theory and empirical studies are systematically reviewed for the purpose of understanding the varying psychological problems of oncology patients and the effectiveness of the group treatment modality. It is proposed that categorizing patient needs into four areas: affective; cognitive; somatic; and social, best gets to the heart of the discussion and research. This perspective enables the clinician to develop group interventions that are patient-centered, grounded in theory, and are more likely to have positive outcomes. Group typologies are also examined for their effectiveness and limitations. This study attempts to articulate the effective parameters of the group models identified as potentially useful. Recommendations are made for systematic and long-term studies.