| behavioral pain management

Testicular Cancer: Combatting Pain & Side Effects

Goal Focused Emotion Regulation Therapy

An article in the American Journal of Men’s Health reports the potential of goal focused emotion regulation psychological therapy (GET) to help young adult survivors of testicular cancer. Researchers report that GET may regulate emotions, improve distress symptoms and pain, and aid in navigating goal skills. Corresponding author Michael A. Hoyt, PhD, University of California, Irvine, associate professor of public health, noted that, “Testicular is the most prevalent non-skin cancer among males in late adolescence and early adulthood, so there is significant need for increased attention to these survivors. They face both psychological and physical impacts, including body image disruption, social relationship difficulty, fertility and sexual distress, anxiety, depression and fear of cancer recurrence. It is particularly challenging because men, especially young men, tend not to seek professional help for stress.”

44 men, ages 18 to 39, postchemotherapy for testicular cancer were eligible for the study. The 2 years after chemotherapy can be especially difficult due to the “intensive surveillance” during the potential recurrence period. Through saliva samples used to measure cortisol and various plasma levels, it was determined that “There were no significant intervention effects in salivary alpha-amylase. Plasma levels of IL-1ra were significantly lower post-intervention in GET compared to individual supportive therapy…” Further research is called for because “GET…has potential to mitigate stress-related processes and inflammation in this young adult survivor group.”

 

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