The Enhancing Connections-Telephone study: a pilot feasibility test of a cancer parenting program

Frances Marcus Lewis, Kristin A. Griffith, Amy Walker, Robin M. Lally, Elizabeth T. Loggers, Ellen H. Zahlis, Mary Ellen Shands, Zainab Alzawad, Hebah Al Mulla, Nai ching Chi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

3 Scopus citations

Abstract

Purpose: The purposes of the study were to (1) test the short-term impact of a telephone-delivered cancer parenting education program, the Enhancing Connections-Telephone (EC-T) Program, on maternal anxiety, depressed mood, parenting competencies, and child behavioral-emotional adjustment and (2) compare those outcomes with outcomes achieved from an in-person delivery of the same program (EC). Methods: Thirty-two mothers comprised the sample for the within-group design and 77 mothers for the between-group design. Mothers were eligible if they had one or more dependent children and were recently diagnosed with stages 0–III breast cancer. Mothers in both groups received five intervention sessions at 2-week intervals from a patient educator using a fully scripted intervention manual. Results: Outcomes from the within-group analysis revealed significant improvements on maternal anxiety, parenting competencies, and the child’s behavioral-emotional functioning. Outcomes from the between-group analysis showed the EC-T did as well or better than EC in positively affecting maternal anxiety, depressed mood, parenting competencies, and the child’s behavioral-emotional adjustment. Furthermore, the EC-T had a significantly greater impact than the EC on maternal confidence in helping their family and themselves manage the cancer’s impact and in staying calm during emotionally charged conversations about the breast cancer with their child. Conclusions: Regardless of the channel of delivery, the Enhancing Connections Program has the potential to positively affect parenting competencies and behavioral-emotional adjustment in mothers and dependent children in the first year of stages 0–III maternal breast cancer. Its positive impact from telephone delivery holds promise for sustainability.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)615-623
Number of pages9
JournalSupportive Care in Cancer
Volume25
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 1 2017

Keywords

  • Cancer
  • Children
  • Oncology
  • Parenting education
  • Pilot feasibility test

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology

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    Lewis, F. M., Griffith, K. A., Walker, A., Lally, R. M., Loggers, E. T., Zahlis, E. H., Shands, M. E., Alzawad, Z., Al Mulla, H., & Chi, N. C. (2017). The Enhancing Connections-Telephone study: a pilot feasibility test of a cancer parenting program. Supportive Care in Cancer, 25(2), 615-623. https://doi.org/10.1007/s00520-016-3448-z