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Acceptance and commitment therapy for adults with advanced cancer (CanACT): study protocol for a feasibility randomised controlled trial

Low, J; Serfaty, M; Davis, S; Vickerstaff, V; Gola, A; Omar, RZ; King, M; ... Jones, L; + view all (2016) Acceptance and commitment therapy for adults with advanced cancer (CanACT): study protocol for a feasibility randomised controlled trial. Trials , 17 (1) , Article 77. 10.1186/s13063-016-1169-8. Green open access

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Abstract

BACKGROUND: One-third of people with cancer experience psychological distress and may suppress distressing thoughts, emotions, and concerns, leading to further problems. Conventional psychological treatments reduce distress by problem solving, but in advanced cancer, when ill health is progressive and death may be approaching, physical and psychological difficulties are complex and have no simple solutions. Acceptance and Commitment Therapy encourages acknowledgement and acceptance of mental experiences, increasing people's ability to work with problems that cannot be solved. Previous pilot work in advanced cancer confirms that distress can be associated with an avoidance of experiencing uncomfortable thoughts and emotions. METHODS/DESIGN: This feasibility randomised controlled trial of Acceptance Commitment Therapy aims to establish parameters for a larger trial. Fifty-four participants with advanced cancer will be randomly allocated to up to eight sessions (each 1 hour) of Acceptance Commitment Therapy or a talking control. Participants will be recruited from those attending outpatient services and hospice day care at three specialist palliative care units in North and East London, United Kingdom. The primary outcome is a measure of functioning in four areas of life (physical, social/family, emotional, and general activity) using the Functional Assessment of Cancer Therapies - General questionnaire at 3 months after randomisation. Secondary outcomes are (i) acceptance using the Acceptance and Action Questionnaire; (ii) psychological distress using the Kessler Psychological Distress Scale; (iii) physical functioning using a timed walk and sit-to-stand test; and (iv) quality of life measures including the Euroqol-5 Dimensions and ICECAP Supportive Care measures. Qualitative data will be collected at 3 months to explore the participants' experiences of the trial and therapy. Data will be collected on the costs of care. DISCUSSION: Data generated on the recruitment, retention, and experience of the interventions and the usefulness of the outcome measures will inform the adaptations required and whether changes in function are consistent with existing data when planning for a sufficiently powered randomised controlled trial. TRIAL REGISTRATION: ISRCTN13841211 (registered 22 July 2015).

Type: Article
Title: Acceptance and commitment therapy for adults with advanced cancer (CanACT): study protocol for a feasibility randomised controlled trial
Location: England
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1186/s13063-016-1169-8
Publisher version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s13063-016-1169-8
Language: English
Additional information: © 2016 Low et al. Open Access This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made. The Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication waiver (http://creativecommons.org/publicdomain/zero/1.0/) applies to the data made available in this article, unless otherwise stated.
Keywords: Feasibility, Randomised control trial, psychological therapy, Acceptance and commitment therapy, Advanced cancer
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > Division of Psychiatry
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences > Institute of Epidemiology and Health
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences > Institute of Epidemiology and Health > Primary Care and Population Health
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Maths and Physical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Maths and Physical Sciences > Dept of Statistical Science
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1473847
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