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Can Integrated Palliative Care Affect Coping Strategies for Patients With AML?

By: Kayci Reyer
Posted: Wednesday, November 17, 2021

According to research presented in the journal Cancer, patients with acute myeloid leukemia (AML) who undergo intensive chemotherapy may benefit from the integration of palliative care during treatment. Thomas W. LeBlanc, MD, MA, MHS, of the Duke University School of Medicine, Durham, North Carolina, and colleagues found that improved outcomes may be largely attributable to the strengthening of coping skills as a result of this integration.

“This work advances the science of palliative care by identifying the impact of specialty palliative care services on patients’ use of coping strategies and elucidating a potential mechanism of benefit for patients with AML,” the study authors commented.

The secondary data analysis included 160 patients who were randomly assigned to receive either integrated palliative care and chemotherapy (n = 86) or chemotherapy alone (n = 74). Patients reported gaining stronger approach-oriented coping skills (P < .01) and becoming less reliant on avoidant coping (P < .05). These changes were observed to affect quality of life, depression, and anxiety symptoms. Overall, 78% of the intervention effect on quality of life, 66% of the effect on depression, and 35% of the effect on anxiety symptoms were found to have resulted from changes in approach-oriented and avoidant coping, the study authors found.

The study relied on patient-reported data gathered at five points: baseline, week 2, week 4, week 12, and week 24. The Functional Assessment of Cancer Therapy–Leukemia, the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale, and the Brief Coping Orientation to Problems Experienced Inventory collected responses regarding quality of life, coping, and mood. The intervention effect was determined at week 2 using causal mediation regression models, whereas linear regression models evaluated the effect integrated care may have on patient coping.

Disclosure: For full disclosures of the study authors, visit acsjournals.onlinelibrary.wiley.com.



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