Background: Patients with breast cancer (BC) experience psychological challenges necessitating therapeutic interventions. This study evaluated the efficacy of Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) in influencing health-related locus of control and emotional regulation in women diagnosed with BC.
Methods: This semi-experimental research, employing a pre-test, post-test, and control group design, was conducted among women with BC receiving care at health centers in Dezful City, Iran in 2019. Forty participants were selected through convenience sampling and subsequently randomized via lottery into experimental and control groups, each comprising 20 individuals. The experimental group underwent an eight-session ACT-based treatment, with one 90-minute session per week. Assessment instruments utilized in this study included Wallston’s health-related locus of control questionnaire and Garnefski’s cognitive emotion regulation questionnaire. Data analysis was conducted using ANCOVA and SPSS version 24.
Results: No significant differences were observed between the groups in the pre-test concerning health-related locus of control and emotional regulation. In the post-test, the mean±SD score for the health-related locus of control in the ACT group was 61.80±7.23, demonstrating a significant difference compared to the control group (47.94±6.11) (P<0.001). Emotional regulation mean scores in the experimental and control groups were 87.35±9.28 and 59.74±7.38, respectively, signifying statistical significance (P=0.005). ACT significantly enhanced health-related locus of control and emotional regulation in women diagnosed with BC (P<0.001).
Conclusion: ACT effectively enhances health-related locus of control and emotional regulation in women with BC. Healthcare professionals and therapists may consider incorporating ACT into their comprehensive treatment strategies to augment healthrelated locus of control and emotional regulation in this patient population.