Mind-body medicine use by women diagnosed with breast cancer: results of a nationally representative survey

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Journal Article
Supportive Care in Cancer, 2020, 28 (3), pp. 1077 - 1082
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© 2019, Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature. Purpose: Worldwide breast cancer is the most commonly diagnosed cancer in women and often associated with a profound physiological stress reaction. Mind-body medicine modalities have been proven effective in reducing stress symptoms. This article will cover the prevalence of MBM use in women with and without breast cancer in the US population and detect predictors of MBM use in women diagnosed with breast cancer. Methods: The 2017 National Health Interview Survey (NHIS) was used to study the prevalence of breast cancer and the use of mind-body medicine (MBM) among individuals with breast cancer in the US population. Using chi-squared tests and backward stepwise multiple logistic regression analyses, predictors of MBM use in women with breast cancer in the past 12 months were identified. Results: The prevalence of breast cancer in women was 3.1%. Among women diagnosed with breast cancer, 25.2% had used MBM in the past 12 months. Spiritual meditation (14.3%), followed by yoga (9.6%), and mindfulness meditation (4.3%) were the most commonly used MBM approaches for women with breast cancer diagnosis. Only higher education independently predicted the use of MBM among them. Conclusions: In this nationally representative sample of the USA, the most common used MBM approach was spiritual meditation, while this approach is much less researched than the evidence based approaches of yoga and mindfulness meditation. Especially stressed individuals worldwide could benefit from MBM the literature suggests. Particularly in the acute survivorship stage, influencing the initial stress reaction could be beneficial.
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