Sleep disturbance is a very common problem for cancer patients that has largely not been addressed in the clinical intervention literature. Mindfulness meditation has demonstrated clinical benefits for a variety of patient populations in other areas of functioning. This study examined the effects of an 8-week Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) program on the sleep quality of a heterogeneous sample of 63 cancer patients. Overall sleep disturbance was significantly reduced (p < .001) and participants reported that their sleep quality had improved (p < .001). There was also a significant reduction in stress (p < .001), mood disturbance (p = .001), and fatigue (p < .001). The associations among these changes and implications for improving quality of life of cancer patients are discussed.
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Dr. Linda Carlson is funded by a Canadian Institutes of Health Research New Investigator Award. We would like to thank all of the participants in the MBSR program who have diligently completed questionnaires, and encourage their quest for healing and personal growth.
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Carlson, L.E., Garland, S.N. Impact of mindfulness-based stress reduction (MBSR) on sleep, mood, stress and fatigue symptoms in cancer outpatients. Int. J. Behav. Med. 12, 278–285 (2005). https://doi.org/10.1207/s15327558ijbm1204_9