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Meaning and Purpose (MaP) therapy II: Feasibility and acceptability from a pilot study in advanced cancer


Kissane, DW and Lethborg, C and Brooker, J and Hempton, C and Burney, S and Michael, N and Staples, M and Osicka, T and Sulistio, M and Shapiro, J and Hiscock, H, Meaning and Purpose (MaP) therapy II: Feasibility and acceptability from a pilot study in advanced cancer, Palliative & Supportive Care, 17, (1) pp. 1-8. ISSN 1478-9515 (2019) [Refereed Article]

Copyright Statement

2019 Cambridge University Press.

DOI: doi:10.1017/S1478951518000883


Objective:Meaning and Purpose (MaP) therapy aims to enhance meaning-based coping through a life review that focuses on the value and worth of the person, key relationships, sources of fulfillment, roles, and future priorities in living life out fully. We sought to test the feasibility and acceptability of a six-session model of MaP therapy against a wait-list control cohort in a pilot study seeking effect sizes on measures of adaptation.

Method: We randomized patients with advanced cancer to MaP therapy or wait-list control, with measures administered at baseline and after 6-8 weeks. Wait-list patients could then crossover to receive therapy, with further measures collected postintervention. Adherence to the manualized model was sustained through weekly supervision and fidelity coding of recorded sessions. We used generalized estimating equations to control for baseline and any correlation of data.

Result: From 134 eligible participants, 57 (43%) consented, and 40 of 45 (89%) offered therapy completed 6 sessions. Key barriers to consenting patients were poor health (15 refusers and 4 withdrawals) and death intervened in 6 participants. MaP therapy generated adequate effect sizes in posttraumatic growth (new possibilities, appreciation of life, and personal strength) and life attitudes (choices and goal seeking) to permit calculation of power for a formal randomized, controlled trial. Significance of results Delivery of this model of existentially oriented therapy is feasible and acceptable to patients. A properly powered randomized controlled trial is justified to examine the efficacy of this intervention.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:therapeutic processes, meaning based therapy, palliative care
Research Division:Health Sciences
Research Group:Public health
Research Field:Preventative health care
Objective Division:Health
Objective Group:Provision of health and support services
Objective Field:Palliative care
UTAS Author:Lethborg, C (Dr Carolyn Lethborg)
ID Code:153720
Year Published:2019
Web of Science® Times Cited:8
Deposited By:UTAS Centre for Rural Health
Deposited On:2022-10-04
Last Modified:2022-11-23

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