CBT for Smoking Cessation among Cancer Patients

Smoking, alcohol use and depression often co-exist at high rates among patients with head and neck cancer. Researchers recently designed a randomized, controlled study to see whether patients with head and neck cancer and at least one of the above traits improved with integrated Cognitive Behavior Therapy (CBT) that addressed all of the above factors.

184 patients were randomly assigned to either usual care or 9-11 CBT phone sessions plus optional medications over a period of six months. At the end of the trial, those in the CBT group had significantly improved their smoking cessation rate as compare to those in the usual care group (47% compared to 31%).

The study suggests that an integrated CBT approach, which treats smoking cessation, alcohol and depression simultaneously, may improve smoking cessation rates and provide a more practical means of addressing these co-morbid factors.

Can’t leave home? Phone therapy can help

A new study shows that Cognitive Behavior Therapy (CBT) delivered entirely by phone can help depressed patients – with lasting results.

393 mildly depressed patients already on antidepressants received either standard care, or antidepressants plus CBT. Those in the CBT group received 10-12 phone sessions over the course of a year. At the end of the study, the CBT group had improved more than those who received standard care (77% improved compared to 63% in the standard care group) – and the benefits lasted for at least six months after CBT treatment had ended. Read more