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Fox Chase Cancer Center Breast Cancer Study Offers Support Group for Couples

PHILADELPHIA (July 29, 1998) -- Treatment for breast cancer can be physically and emotionally demanding not only for the patient but for her partner as well. Dr. Sharon Manne, a behavioral researcher at Fox Chase Cancer Center, has dedicated much of her career to studying family relationships and how they affect a patient's response to cancer treatment.

"Studies have shown that communication between partners is directly related to how well the patient adjusts to and copes with the illness and the treatment," Manne pointed out.

A Couples Group for women with breast cancer and their partners is available at Fox Chase as part of a study by Manne being funded by the National Cancer Institute. Couples will learn techniques to help them cope with treatment and manage stress.

"Participants meet as a group with their partners," Manne explained. "We ask them to practice coping and listening skills and to communicate their needs effectively."

Manne began her research at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in New York City and has continued her work at Fox Chase Cancer Center. She received a National Cancer Institute Research Career Development Award to focus on couples dealing with a cancer diagnosis.

An earlier phase of this research examined how communication within couples affects adjustment to cancer and its treatment. Now Manne is beginning the final phase of these studies, which aims to teach couples skills that will help them deal effectively with the challenges they face.

There is no fee for this group. If you are interested or would like more information, please call 1-800-717-4798.

Fox Chase Cancer Center is one of 34 National Cancer Institute-designated comprehensive cancer centers in the nation. The Center's activities include basic and clinical research, prevention, detection and treatment of cancer and community outreach programs.

Fox Chase Cancer Center, part of the Temple University Health System, is one of the leading cancer research and treatment centers in the United States. Founded in 1904 in Philadelphia as one of the nation’s first cancer hospitals, Fox Chase was also among the first institutions to be designated a National Cancer Institute Comprehensive Cancer Center in 1974. Fox Chase researchers have won the highest awards in their fields, including two Nobel Prizes. Fox Chase physicians are also routinely recognized in national rankings, and the Center’s nursing program has received the Magnet recognition for excellence four consecutive times. Today, Fox Chase conducts a broad array of nationally competitive basic, translational, and clinical research, with special programs in cancer prevention, detection, survivorship, and community outreach.  For more information, call 1-888-FOX CHASE or (1-888-369-2427).

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