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2020 Chinese Conference on Oncology (CCO) Cancer Nursing Forum Successfully Held

December 30th, 2020 in Editorial Office, International News

Authors: Zhenqi Lu, Yongyi Chen, Xiaoju Zhang
Institutions: Cancer Nursing Committee of Chinese Anti-Cancer Association

The Cancer Nursing Forum, organized by the Cancer Nursing Committee of Chinese Conference on Oncology (CCO), was successfully held in Guangzhou, China on November 14, 2020. The Forum had drawn nearly 500 participants expertise at cancer nursing from across the country to celebrate and advance the development of the oncology nursing profession.

The keynote speaker Dr. Yumei Wang, director of Shengjing Hospital of China Medical University, showcased a speech about the topic of “Palliative Care – Guarding the Dignity of Life of Cancer Patients”. Palliative care requires a professional team, thus Dr. Wang believes her team work with the purpose of “Influence life with life, warm the heart with heart” can bring dignity to more patients. Then, Professor Changrong Yuan, another keynote speaker from School of Nursing, Fudan University, emphasized the importance of Patient-Reported Outcome (PRO) in the process of cancer care. Patient-Reported Outcomes come directly from patients’ self-reports on their health status, functional status, and treatment feelings, which can evaluate patients’ status more efficiently and comprehensively. The third speaker, Tong Yingge, a professor of School of Medicine, Hangzhou Normal University, introduced the application of five pain assessment tools. She exemplified specific clinical cases to demonstrate how to form the structural elements, process elements and outcome elements of pain management in cancer patients. After that, Professor Qian Lu, coming from the School of Nursing, Peking University, presented the method to construct a risk prediction model and an early warning model of breast cancer-related lymphedema (BRCL). She aimed to achieve the early screening of BRCL with the help of models and machine learning methods.

Director of Cancer Nursing Committee of Chinese Anti-Cancer Association: Zhenqi Lu
Huiying Qin, Director of Nursing Department of Sun Yat-sen University Cancer Center
Director of Nursing Department of Sun Yat-sen University Cancer Center: Huiying Qin
2020 Chinese Conference on Oncology (CCO) Cancer Nursing Forum
A scene from the 2020 Chinese Conference on Oncology (CCO) Cancer Nursing Forum

As to distinctive management, Li Liu, deputy director of Sun Yat-sen University Cancer Center, established the “Internet-Nursing Service” platform. By organizing standard training and giving management in the whole process, Liu attempted to meet patients’ needs with limited medical resources and achieve the integration of medical and nursing services in the community. Besides, Lijun Chen, director of Guangxi Medical University Affiliated Tumor Hospital, displayed a cancer follow-up information system subsequently. She set up a professional follow-up team and carried out standard follow-up practice. In addition, Zhimin Liu, a head nurse of The Fourth Hospital of Hebei Medical University and Hebei Cancer Hospital introduced the diversified management of “the warm sun studio” in the medical oncology department. The project combined with their own characteristics and showed the humanistic care in various forms.

At this conference, eight excellent representatives were selected from 1,983 manuscript submissions, to share their views on how to promote cancer patient care, improve the quality of life, and deepen the meaning of cancer care.

The conference assembled plenty of domestic experts in the field of cancer care, showcasing cutting-edge research concepts, academic achievements and discussing the future development of cancer care.

Mindfulness-Based Interventions in Cancer Care

October 11th, 2019 in Editorial Office, Reflection

Written by:
Karen Kane McDonnell, PhD, RN, Associate Professor David G. Gallerani, MPH, Research Associate Amanda R. Myhren-Bennett, MSN, RN, PhD student
Lung Cancer Survivorship Research Program, College of Nursing, University of South Carolina, Columbia, SC, USA

Mindfulness is derived from Buddhist traditions and described by one author as an intentional and nonjudgmental awareness of the present moment (Kabat-Zinn, 1990). Mindfulness-based interventions (MBIs) are used to treat and prevent a wide range of chronic conditions.

Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR)—a group-based, eight-week program and one of the most well-known MBIs—was developed by Jon Kabat-Zinn, PhD, currently founding executive director of the Center for Mindfulness in Medicine, Health Care, and Society at the University of Massachusetts Medical School in the United States and its renowned Stress Reduction Clinic.

Mindfulness specifically helps survivors of cancer, their family members, and/or friends cope with symptoms of cancer, cancer therapies, and related stress (Rouleau, Garland, & Carlson, 2015). Dubbed a “healing practice” by Carlson and Speca (2010), mindfulness may even enhance immune system performance and reduce harmful levels of circulating stress hormones.

The Foundation: MBCR

Mindfulness-Based Cancer Recovery (MBCR) is one of many interventions built on MBSR (Carlson & Speca, 2010). At each session, participants engage in mindfulness practices, including gentle yoga and meditations. By repeatedly returning their attention to current experiences, participants gradually learn to disengage from dysfunctional thoughts and experience the emotions and bodily sensations of the present moment. Like MBSR, MBCR teaches participants to stop worrying or ruminating about the past and the future and to simply allow life experiences to unfold.

Mindfulness-Based Cancer Recovery (MBCR) is one of many interventions built on MBSR (Carlson & Speca, 2010). At each session, participants engage in mindfulness practices, including gentle yoga and meditations. By repeatedly returning their attention to current experiences, participants gradually learn to disengage from dysfunctional thoughts and experience the emotions and bodily sensations of the present moment. Like MBSR, MBCR teaches participants to stop worrying or ruminating about the past and the future and to simply allow life experiences to unfold.

Randomized clinical trials involving MBSR, MBCR, and other MBIs have shown efficacy in patients with cancer—that is, they have yielded improved psychosocial and physical outcomes (Carlson, 2017; Johannsen et al., 2016; Lengacher et al., 2016; Zhang et al., 2015). Yet, very few studies have involved survivors of early-stage non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC). With consultation from Linda Carlson, Enbridge Research Chair in Psychosocial Oncology at the University of Calgary and co-founder of the Tom Baker Cancer Centre’s MBCR program, a team of researchers, clinicians, and mindfulness practitioners adapted MBCR for this specific population of survivors of lung cancer and family members (dyads).

Breathe Easier

In 2017–18, the adapted program, Breathe Easier, was pilot tested using a prospective, one-group, repeated measure, mixed-method design, for feasibility (recruitment, retention, adherence, acceptability) and preliminary effects (symptom improvement—of dyspnea, fatigue, stress, and insomnia).

The following instruments measured outcome variables (see footnote 1):

• FACIT Dyspnea Short Forms
• FACIT Fatigue Scale v. 4
• Perceived Stress Scale v. 4
• Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index

Using Stata v. 14, descriptive statistics were obtained for feasibility measures. Student t-tests were performed for subset comparisons. Face-to-face interviews (all audio-recorded and transcribed) extracted dyads’ perceptions. NVivo Pro 12 was used for data management, and thematic analysis was used for data analysis.

Results

The greatest challenge was recruitment. This and other facts about the sample follow:

  • 20% recruitment (31 dyads or 62 participants of 164 survivors reached)
  • 94% retention
  • 62% African American
  • 44% male

Adherence was demonstrated by good attendance and exceeding expectations on home assignments (breathing exercises and meditations). All participants practiced gentle movements (sitting, standing, and floor yoga) and met about 80% of expectations.

All agreed the intervention materials were easy to use, that learning yoga and breathing exercises helped them, and that involving a family member was important. Survivors had less dyspnea and less perceived stress over time. Fatigue and sleep scores improved for both survivors and family members. Six themes emerged from interview data and enriched our understanding of feasibility and preliminary outcomes:

  1. Learning to Breathe Easier
  2. Interacting with Others Benefits Me
  3. Stretching, Releasing Tension, and Feeling Energized
  4. Enhanced Closeness with Committed Partners
  5. Refocusing on Living
  6. Sustaining New Skills Is a Decision

Conclusions

The pilot test’s strong retention, adherence, and acceptability demonstrate strong feasibility overall. Slow recruitment may be attributable to the isolating nature of lung cancer, uniqueness of the intervention, relatively low volume of early-stage survivors, and/or requirement of a family member to take part.

Preliminary outcome data indicate benefits of Breathe Easier over time for both survivors of NSCLC and their family members. Intervention development team members were inspired by participants’ engagement and are seeking funding to implement the next steps.

References:

Carlson, L. E. (2017). Mindfulness and cancer care: Easing emotional and physical suffering. Alternative and Complementary Therapies, 23(5), 167–170.

Carlson, L., & Speca, M. (2010). Mindfulness-based cancer recovery: A step-by-step MBSR approach to help you cope with treatment and reclaim your life. Oakland, CA: New Harbinger Publications.

Kabat-Zinn, J. (1990). Full catastrophe living: Using the wisdom of your body and mind to face stress, pain and illness. New York, NY: Delacourt.

Lengacher, C. A., Reich, R. R., Paterson, C. L., Ramesar, S., Park, J. Y., Alinat, C., … Jacobsen, P. B. (2016). Examination of broad symptom improvement resulting from mindfulness-based stress reduction in breast cancer survivors: A randomized controlled trial. Journal of Clinical Oncology, 34(24), 2827.

Johannsen, M., O’Connor, M., O’Toole, M. S., Jensen, A. B., Højris, I., & Zachariae, R. (2016). Efficacy of mindfulness-based cognitive therapy on late post-treatment pain in women treated for primary breast cancer: A randomized controlled trial. Journal of Clinical Oncology, 34(28), 3390-3399.

Rouleau, C. R., Garland, S. N., & Carlson, L. E. (2015). The impact of mindfulness-based interventions on symptom burden, positive psychological outcomes, and biomarkers in cancer patients. Cancer Management and Research, 7, 121.

Zhang, M., Wen, Y., Liu, W., Peng, L., Wu, X., & Liu, Q. (2015). Effectiveness of mindfulness-based therapy for reducing anxiety and depression in patients with cancer: A meta-analysis. Medicine, 94(45), 1–9.


Footnotes (1) References for instruments: Carpenter, J. S., & Andrykowski, M. A. (1998). Psychometric evaluation of the Pittsburgh sleep quality index. Journal of Psychosomatic Research, 45(1), 5–13; Choi, S. W., Victorson, D. E., Yount, S., Anton, S., & Cella, D. (2011). Development of a conceptual framework and calibrated item banks to measure patient-reported dyspnea severity and related functional limitations. Value in Health, 14(2), 291-306.Roberti, J. W., Harrington, L. N., & Storch, E. A. (2006). Further psychometric support for the 10‐item version of the perceived stress scale. Journal of College Counseling, 9(2), 135-147. Webster, K., Cella, D., & Yost, K. (2003). The functional assessment of chronic illness therapy (FACIT) measurement system: properties, applications and interpretation. Health and Quality of Life Outcomes, 1(79), 1-7.

The International Cancer Nursing News (ICNN) Blog is Now Live!

April 7th, 2015 in Editorial Office

by Winnie So, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong, China. ISNCC Communications Committee Chair.

We are very excited to launch the International Cancer Nursing News (ICNN) blog and look forward to your participation!

Share your expert knowledge and experiences with other international oncology nursing professionals!  The International Society of Nurses in Cancer Care (ISNCC) welcomes all oncology nursing professionals to contribute articles to the ICNN.

View submission criteria and consider submitting a post!

Share your experiences after attending an oncology nursing event, reflect on a clinical situation you encountered at your workplace, or update your colleagues on recent research at your institution.  All submissions relevant to oncology nursing are welcome.

As we develop this new platform, please feel free to send your comments, questions or feedback to us at info@isncc.org.  Your input is vital to the success of the society’s development and activities.