Psychological well-being improves cancer prognosis
Cancer creates a new reality, with dilemmas and problems. Concerns and questions about the nature of the disease, the perspectives, and the family burden are some of them. Psychological needs are more frequent than cancer. Physical activity is often reduced. The mental and physical discomfort leads to social isolation and ultimately a vicious cycle of gradual resignation from life itself. It however clear that many cancers are managed successfully, particularly when they are diagnosed in early stages.
The mental and physical health of cancer patients might have a tremendous effect on the course of the disease and their quality of life. Several psychosocial factors, associated with key elements of the metastatic cascade, have been proposed as risk factors for cancer progression. These include stress, chronic depression, and lack of social support.
In a study, published in Supportive Care in Cancer, was to examine the effect of an exercise program and a group psychotherapy program on the mood profile of cancer patients . The study included 39 patients, who were assigned in 3 groups: a psychotherapy group, a group who attended the exercise program and a control group. The reduction in anger was particularly evident and statistically significant in the psychotherapy group. A better mental health was also observed in the exercise group.
The findings of the study supported the beneficial effect of psychological intervention on the mood of patients with cancer. Psychological interventions produce significant quality of life gains, as it was found by other investigators, too, with less symptoms of stress, depression and other mood disturbances.
 Exercise, supportive group therapy, and mood profile of Greek cancer patients: intervention effect and related comparisons. D. Papastergiou, D. Kokaridas, K. bonotis, N. Diggelidis, A. Patsiaouras. Supportive Care in Cancer 2018;26:3571-3578.