The effectiveness of counseling based on acceptance and commitment therapy on body image and self-esteem in polycystic ovary syndrome: An RCT


Background: Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is one of the most common endocrine and metabolic disorders known with irregular menstruation, hirsutism, alopecia, obesity, infertility, and acne. These symptoms cause a negative effect on the satisfaction of body image, self-esteem, and quality of life in such patients. Recent studies emphasize the need to consider the psychological problems in these women and also the need for appropriate interventions.

Objective: The aim of this study was to determine the effectiveness of group counseling based on acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT) on body image and self-esteem in patients with PCOS.

Materials and Methods: In this randomized controlled trial, 52 women with PCOS were randomly allocated to intervention and control groups (n = 26/each) using the table of random numbers. Group counseling based on the ACT was held in eight sessions of 90 min once a week for the intervention group. The demographic questionnaire, Littleton development of the body image concern inventory and Rosenberg self-esteem scale were completed in both groups before, immediately after, and one month after the intervention.

Results: The mean scores of body image concern (p = 0.001) and self-esteem (p ≤ 0.001) in the intervention group after the intervention and follow-up were significantly different from the control group.

Conclusion: Based on the findings of this study, use of cognitive-behavioral therapies in health care centers is recommended as a complementary method.

Key words: Acceptance and commitment therapy, Body image, Self-esteem, Polycystic ovary syndrome, Cognitive behavior therapies.

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