Effects of two types of social support and education on adaptation to early-stage breast cancer



A Roy adaptation model–based support and education intervention for women with early-stage breast cancer was tested in a three-group, three-phase randomized clinical trial of a sample of 125 women. The experimental group received 13 months of combined individual telephone and in-person group support and education, Control Group 1 received 13 months of telephone-only individual support and education, and Control Group 2 received one-time mailed educational information. The experimental group and Control Group 1 reported less mood disturbance at the end of all three phases, less loneliness at the end of Phases II and III, and a higher-quality relationship with a significant other at the end of Phase II than did Control Group 2. No group differences were found for cancer-related worry or well-being. The findings suggest that individual telephone support may provide an effective alternative to in-person support groups. Further study of telephone interventions is recommended using ethnically and economically heterogeneous samples. © 2002 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Res Nurs Health 25:459–470, 2002.