The Efficacy of Psychoeducational Support Group for Saudi Breast Cancer Survivors

Document Type : Research Articles


1 Psych Care Clinic, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.

2 Department of Infectiouse Genome, Public Health Authority, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.

3 Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, King Fahad Medical City KFMC, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.


Background: The adverse effects of psychological distress and quality of life are common outcomes in breast cancer survivors. Psychoeducational interventions have been widely used to reduce these adverse outcomes among those patients. This study aims to assess the impact of the Blossom support group on psychological distress and quality of life in breast cancer patients in Saudi Arabia. Methods: This study is a retrospective cohort study for the Blossom program, which was held yearly for eight weeks from 2014 until 2018. Data was collected from the survivors’ records at the Zahra Breast Cancer Association in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. Outcome measurements: include the quality of life scale (SF-36) and Hospital Anxiety Depression Scale (HADS) with both were available in the Arabic translated version. Both tools were used as the screening measurement for the assessment of the quality of life, depression, and anxiety before and after the program. The data were analyzed using the Statistical Analytical Software (SAS), version 9.4. Statistical differences in median scores of SF-36 and HADS before and after the program was tested using Wilcoxon signed-rank test. Result: A total of 54 breast cancer survivors were enrolled in the Blossom support program over the period 2014 to 2018. Of these participants, only 25 participants completed the full eight weeks program.  There were statistically significant differences in the overall quality of life (SF-36) before and after the 8 weeks from baseline of the experiment (W = 60, P-value =0.0125). Moreover, the overall anxiety and depression scores were tested separately and the results reveal statistically significant differences in both dimensions before and after the program (Anxiety: W=132, P-value = 0.0059; depression: W=157, P-value = 0.0002). Conclusion: The Blossom support program showed a positive impact on the quality of life and the psychological well-being of breast cancer survivors. It is recommended to utilize this support program across a wide range of health organizations with breast cancer survivors as a baseline of psychological care to improve the quality of life. 


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