Development of Group Interventions for Breast Cancer Survivors

Full Title

Development of Group Interventions for Breast Cancer Survivors Study


The purpose of this study is to compare two types of groups for breast cancer survivors: a “Meaning-Centered Group” and a “Discussion Group.” Many breast cancer survivors seek help to deal with the emotional burden of having gone through the cancer experience. Participation in groups offering support often helps cancer survivors cope with the stresses of life after cancer by giving them a place to express their feelings.

The Meaning-Centered Group is intended to teach breast cancer survivors how to maintain or even increase a sense of meaning and purpose in their lives after treatment for cancer. The Discussion Group is intended to help breast cancer survivors cope by giving them a place to get support from other breast cancer survivors. If you choose to be in this study, you will participate in one of the two groups. The group you participate in will be determined at random.

The goal of this study is to compare the benefits of these two types of group approaches for breast cancer survivors. The study is also assessing the benefits and feasibility of conducting the groups virtually, using telephone and computer. Since the groups will be held virtually, all activities for this study can be completed at your home.


You may be eligible to sign up for this study if you meet the following eligibility criteria:

  • You are 18 years of age or older.
  • You are fluent in English.
  • You have a history of early-stage or non-metastatic breast cancer, which includes ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS) or stages I, II, or III.
  • More than 3 months have passed since you finished active treatment for any type of cancer, although you may still be taking hormonal therapy or trastuzumab (Herceptin).
  • You have no evidence of or received treatment for metastatic disease, a second primary cancer, or recurrence, except for basal or squamous cell carcinoma of the skin.
  • Your dosage and use of any medications for mood, anxiety, depression, thoughts, sensory experiences (such as hallucinations), or sleep are stable and consistent.
  • You have access to a telephone, a computer, and the Internet.
  • You are a resident of New York State or are able to participate in virtual group sessions while being physically present in New York State.

If you are interested and would like to learn more about the study, please contact the research staff at 646-888-0129 (or via e-mail at, or Dr. Wendy Lichtenthal at 646-888-4812.