Giving patients stress-relief advice and relaxation classes before surgery could speed recovery time and boost long-term survival.
A recent study of 160 men undergoing surgery for prostate cancer has found that those receiving stress management therapy had increased activity in their immune systems 48 hours after the procedure.
The study in question, which was conducted in Texas and published in the journal Psychosomatic Medicine, found that men with prostate cancer who had regular relaxation and stress management therapy had significantly higher levels of proinflammatory cytokines (proteins which encourage healing), two days after surgery.
In addition to this, the natural killer cells which help to protect the body against infection, also seemed more active two days after surgery.
Doctors have said that though more research is needed before the findings could influence treatment of surgical patients across the country, this increase in the immune system could be really helpful at lowering the risk of cancer and boosting the chance of recovery.
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