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Year : 2014  |  Volume : 19  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 88-93

Effect of a spiritual care program on levels of anxiety in patients with leukemia

1 Department of Adult Health Nursing, Nursing and Midwifery Care Research Center, School of Nursing and Midwifery, Isfahan University of Medical Sciences, Isfahan, Iran
2 Department of Psychiatric Nursing, School of Nursing and Midwifery, Isfahan University of Medical Sciences, Isfahan, Iran

Correspondence Address:
Amir Musarezaie
Department of Adult Health Nursing, School of Nursing and Midwifery, Isfahan University of Medical Sciences, Isfahan
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Source of Support: This manuscript is a part of the MSc dissertation of Amir Musarezaie, which is fi nancially supported by Isfahan University of Medical Sciences, No: 390576., Conflict of Interest: None

PMID: 24554966

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Background: Leukemia is the most common and fatal cancer among young adults. Among all malignancies, it has the greatest effects on emotional and mental aspects of the patients. While 25-33% of patients with non-hematological malignancies suffer from anxiety disorder, some studies have reported the rate among patients with leukemia as high as 50%. Anxiety can negatively affect other important characteristics and parameters in patients with cancer. Furthermore, cancer increases the patients' spiritual needs. Therefore, spirituality has a significant role in adapting to leukemia and coping with its consequent mental disorders such as anxiety. This study was hence performed to determine the effects of a spiritual care program on anxiety of patients with leukemia. Materials and Methods: This randomized clinical trial was conducted in Sayyed-Al-Shohada Hospital affiliated to Isfahan University of Medical Sciences (Isfahan, Iran) in 2012. Sixty four adult patients with leukemia were randomly divided into the experiment and control groups. The spiritual care program including supportive presence and support for religious rituals was implemented for 3 days. Anxiety subscale from the 42-item depression, anxiety and stress scale was completed before and after the intervention for both groups. Data was analyzed using descriptive and inferential statistical methods (Chi-square, paired and independent t-tests) in SPSS 18. Results: There was no significant difference between the two groups before the intervention. However, after the intervention, mean score of anxiety were significantly lower in the experiment group than in the control group ( P < 0.01). There was also a significant difference in the scores of the experiment group before and after the intervention ( P < 0.01). Such a difference was absent in the control group. Conclusions: Our spiritual care program could successfully decrease anxiety levels in patients with leukemia. Therefore, in cases of refractory diseases such as cancer, nurses have to apply a holistic care approach with emphasis on spiritual care.

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