(HealthDay News) — For adolescents with cancer, mindfulness-based meditation is associated with a reduction in depressive symptoms, and with increased sleep quality for girls, according to a study presented at the annual meeting of the American Psychosomatic Society, held from March 12–15 in San Francisco.
Catherine Malboeuf-Hurtubise, from the University of Montreal, and colleagues conducted a prospective study to examine mood, sleep, and quality of life in 13 adolescents with cancer. Eight participants were assigned to eight 90-minute weekly mindfulness-based meditation sessions and five adolescents were put on a wait-list (control). Patients completed questionnaires at baseline and after the last meditation session.
The researchers found that after eight sessions participants in the mindfulness-based meditation group had a reduction in depressive symptoms, with a trend toward significance. In the mindfulness group, sleep quality increased for girls, with a trend toward significance. Large effect sizes were seen for negative emotionality and anxiety in boys, and mindfulness scores in girls, although these effects were not significant.
“Mindfulness-based interventions for teenagers with cancer appear as a promising option to lighten psychological inconveniences of living with cancer,” Malboeuf-Hurtubise said in a statement.