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Article

A Multi-Modal Family Peer Support-Based Program to Improve Quality of Life among Pediatric Brain Tumor Patients: A Mixed-Methods Pilot Study

1
Department of Population Health & Disease Prevention, University of California Irvine, Irvine, CA 92697, USA
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MaxLove Project, Orange, CA 92868, USA
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Chinese Medicine and Acupuncture, CHOC Children’ s Main Campus Orange, Orange, CA 92868, USA
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Department of Oncology, CHOC Children’ s Main Campus Orange, Orange, CA 92868, USA
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Department of Pediatric Psychology, CHOC Children’s Main Campus Orange, Orange, CA 92868, USA
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Department of Neurosurgery, CHOC Children’s Main Campus Orange, Orange, CA 92868, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Children 2020, 7(4), 35; https://doi.org/10.3390/children7040035
Received: 29 February 2020 / Revised: 11 March 2020 / Accepted: 1 April 2020 / Published: 20 April 2020
Background: Pediatric brain tumor (PBT) survivors and their families are at risk for diminished psychosocial and quality of life outcomes. Community-based programs that leverage peer support in the context of integrative modalities such as traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) represent a promising avenue for meeting the multidimensional needs of survivors and their families. Methods: Parents and children were enrolled in a 12-week program that included weekly group TCM, a moderated private Facebook support group designed through social support and modeling theory, and weekly parent-only health behavior education and yoga. Process measures and quantitative and qualitative survey data was collected to gauge participant adherence, acceptability, and satisfaction, as well as exploratory outcomes. Results: Eleven parents completed surveys at all time points. Six of nine families attended at least 80% of the group TCM sessions, and eight of nine families interacted in the Facebook support group at least five days a week. Parents reported high levels of satisfaction and perceived benefits for the program. Baseline emotional distress, health behaviors, and QoL measurements improved during the three-month intervention. Qualitative data indicated parents perceived both in-person and the Facebook group peer support contributed to the benefits of the program. Conclusion: This feasibility study demonstrated that a multimodal peer support-based intervention that included in-person and online group interaction is feasible and acceptable to parents of pediatric brain tumor patients. Further research on interventions for caregivers that include in-person and online group-based peer support is warranted, with the goal of exploring similar outcomes in other childhood cancer diagnoses. View Full-Text
Keywords: childhood cancer; pediatric brain tumor; quality of life; peer support; acupuncture childhood cancer; pediatric brain tumor; quality of life; peer support; acupuncture
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MDPI and ACS Style

Wilford, J.G.; McCarty, R.; Torno, L.; Mucci, G.; Torres-Eaton, N.; Shen, V.; Loudon, W. A Multi-Modal Family Peer Support-Based Program to Improve Quality of Life among Pediatric Brain Tumor Patients: A Mixed-Methods Pilot Study. Children 2020, 7, 35. https://doi.org/10.3390/children7040035

AMA Style

Wilford JG, McCarty R, Torno L, Mucci G, Torres-Eaton N, Shen V, Loudon W. A Multi-Modal Family Peer Support-Based Program to Improve Quality of Life among Pediatric Brain Tumor Patients: A Mixed-Methods Pilot Study. Children. 2020; 7(4):35. https://doi.org/10.3390/children7040035

Chicago/Turabian Style

Wilford, Justin G., Ruth McCarty, Lilibeth Torno, Grace Mucci, Nadia Torres-Eaton, Violet Shen, and William Loudon. 2020. "A Multi-Modal Family Peer Support-Based Program to Improve Quality of Life among Pediatric Brain Tumor Patients: A Mixed-Methods Pilot Study" Children 7, no. 4: 35. https://doi.org/10.3390/children7040035

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