Meaning-Centered Psychotherapy: A Form of Psychotherapy for Patients With Cancer
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Caring for patients with cancer involves addressing their myriad physical, psychological, social, and spiritual needs. Although many cancer treatments focus on physical or psychological needs, few treatments specifically target the basic need for meaning and spiritual well-being in this population. This article describes the creation and evolution of a new psychotherapy devoted to these needs, a therapy termed "meaning-centered psychotherapy.” In this article, a detailed description of meaning-centered psychotherapy is provided. An explanation of the current research findings related to this treatment are also offered, with information about the various group and individual treatments as well as the new expansions for use with cancer survivors or nursing staff. Overall, meaning-centered psychotherapy shows promise for enhancing meaning and spiritual well-being among patients with cancer and offers exciting possibilities for future research in other areas.
KeywordsCancer Existentialism Meaning Psychosocial oncology Psychotherapy Spirituality
Work supported by grants from the American Cancer Society: MRSG-13-233-01-PCSM and the Westreich Foundation (Dr. Lori Montross Thomas), as well as the National Institute of Mental Health K23MH091176 (Dr. Scott Irwin).
Compliance with Ethics Guidelines
Conflict of Interest
Lori P. Montross Thomas, Emily A. Meier, and Scott A. Irwin declare that they have no conflict of interest.
Human and Animal Rights and Informed Consent
This article does not contain any studies with human or animal subjects performed by any of the authors.
Papers of particular interest, published recently, have been highlighted as: • Of importance
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