Despite encouraging statistics and the proliferation of breast cancer information in the media, the psychological impact of breast cancer can be overwhelming, even traumatic, for many women.
Philadelphia, PA (PRWEB) August 18, 2015
HealthForumOnline (HFO) has recently updated one of its online continuing education (CE) courses for psychologists, social workers, counselors and other allied health care workers, Psychological Care of the Breast Cancer Patient. This informative online CE course is one of ten cancer-related courses in HFO’s Cancer Adaptation category. Our extensive, cost effective and convenient CE resource library houses over 100 online CE courses for mental health professionals from over 20 course categories related to behavioral health.
Focusing on and staying current with the psychosocial care of the breast cancer patient is particularly important for mental health providers as breast cancer is the most common cancer among American women. Now considered a highly “treatable disease” if detected early enough, 94% of patients will move along the cancer continuum -- from diagnosis, through treatment, and emerge into the re-entry period with a good medical prognosis (1). Despite encouraging statistics and the proliferation of breast cancer information in the media, the psychological impact of breast cancer can be overwhelming, even traumatic, for many women. Further, adaptation and adjustment can vary across individuals and across the cancer stage continuum -- with metastatic disease presenting a different constellation of issues compared to early stage cancer (e.g., 2-3).
This newly updated online continuing education course from HealthForumOnline reviews the research on the psychological sequelae of a breast cancer diagnosis including common treatment-related side effects that influence mood, shifts in body image and libido, issues of loss and grief, concerns for family regarding risk. Specifically, mental health professionals will be able to identify the empirical evidence on the psychological adjustment to the diagnosis of breast cancer, across cancer stage. Common symptoms that correspond to breast cancer treatment (e.g., chemotherapy related fatigue) and how they are distinguished from symptoms related to mood disturbances (e.g., depression) and other psychological syndromes will be presented to guide the clinician with diagnosis and treatment. Lastly, psychologists, social workers, counselors and other providers working with breast cancer patients will be more familiar with and better able to apply psychological techniques that facilitate adaptation to diagnosis and treatment and identify their clinical application within the breast cancer population.
1. American Cancer Society. “Cancer Facts & Figures.” 2010.
2. Andersen, B.L., Lester, J., Crosthwaite, K., Stout, R., Jones, R.N., Holloman, C., & Shapiro, C., Women with breast cancer: self-reported distress in early survivorship. Oncology nursing forum, 2015. 42(1): E17-23.
3. Ganz, P.A., Stanton, A.L., & Rowland, J.H., Life after diagnosis and treatment of cancer in adulthood: Contributions from psychosocial oncology research. The American Psychologist, 2015. 70(2): p. 159-174.
HealthForumOnline (HFO) is approved as a provider of CE courses by the American Psychological Association, the National Board of Certified Counselors, and the Association of Social Work Boards. Health professionals can complete CE courses at their own pace, on their own schedule, anywhere they have Internet access – generating their own CE certificate.