Those with a cancer experience are all too familiar with the anxiety that many experience wondering and waiting if and how cancer may return. New research is helping shed more light on what exactly “fear of cancer recurrence” means as a measurable patient outcome, psychological and emotional factors that may increase or decrease it, and what steps can be taken by patients and providers to help reduce it.

Joining us to discuss fear of recurrence is Sarah Reed, MSW, MPH, PhD, of the Betty Irene Moore School of Nursing at UC Davis. You’ll hear Dr. Reed discuss new research—including her own—that seeks to more clearly define fear of recurrence and its impact on cancer patients. Read more about Dr. Reed’s background below.

Fear of Cancer Recurrence Resources

Download the webinar slide deck [PDF]

Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) – Dr. Reed mentioned MBSR during the webinar as a potential therapy to alleviate Fear of Cancer Recurrence. Below are links to resources and books she recommends on the topic.

  • The Center for Mindfulness at UMass Medical School has a website with number of resources about MBSR, including a searchable database where you can find an MBSR program near you.
  • Mindfulness-Based Cancer Recovery: A Step-by-Step MBSR Approach to Help You Cope with Treatment and Reclaim Your Life, by Linda Carlson, PhD, RPsych, and Michael Speca, PsyD, RPsych – Amazon.com link
  • Being Well (Even When You’re Sick): Mindfulness Practices for People with Cancer and Other Serious Illnesses, by Elana Rosenbaum – Amazon.com link
  • Here for Now: Living Well With Cancer Through Mindfulness, by Elana Rosenbaum – Amazon.com link

Sarah C. Reed, MSW, MPH, PhDAbout the Presenter: Sarah Reed, MSW, MPH, PhD

Sarah Reed is a postdoctoral scholar in the Betty Irene Moore School of Nursing at UC Davis, mentored by Associate Dean for Research Janice Bell. Her research focuses on vulnerable populations and issues of health inequality, including the effect of health transitions on mental health, particularly in cancer survivors.

Reed’s ongoing work examines psychosocial concerns; specifically, fear of cancer recurrence and health behaviors in cancer survivors — addressing a significant gap in the understanding of the psychosocial health and related needs of the growing population of cancer survivors. She collaborates with a range of interprofessional researchers on projects aimed to improve health outcomes of patients with cancer.

Prior to joining the School of Nursing, Reed was an assistant professor in the Jane Addams College of Social Work at the University of Illinois, Chicago (UIC), where her work focused on cancer and issues related to racial, social and economic justice.

She has been a clinical social worker for close to two decades, most recently in the Adult Survivorship Program at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute in Boston. There, Reed developed and managed psychosocial survivorship care and programs.


This webinar is presented by NCCS as part of our educational efforts for our Cancer Policy and Advocacy Team (CPAT) program. Learn more about the CPAT program »

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