Psychology Today writes that spirituality means something different to everyone. For some people, spirituality is about participating in organized religion. For others, spirituality is something more personal. For people getting in touch with their spiritual side involves private prayer, yoga, meditation, quiet reflection, or even long walks. Research has shown that even skeptics can't deny the sense that there is something greater than the concrete world we see. On March 10, 2013, Cole Petrochko has reported for Medpage Today, Spirituality May Boost Outcomes in Ovarian Ca.
Researchers have reported that ovarian cancer patients who reported high levels of spirituality presurgery had better outcomes for stress and depression, as well as factors which are known to regulate tumor angiogenesis and inflammation. According to Premal Thaker, MD of the Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, and colleagues, self-report of high spirituality was associated with significantly lower perceived stress and depression. These same patients were also noted to have significantly lower levels of IL-6, both in peripheral blood and in ascites, after adjusting for stress and depression. Thaker has said, "Spirituality is an important psychosocial resource that positively influences quality of life." Thaker has added that "less is known about the role of positive stress buffers, such as spirituality and cytokines, in tumor angiogenesis and inflammation in ovarian cancer patients."
She has also noted that patient's spirituality was defined as "an individual's sense of peace, purpose, and connection to others, and beliefs about the meaning of life." These beliefs and feelings have been found to be important for patients at the time of diagnosis and at the end of life by offering comfort, hope, improved quality of life, and meaning. The researchers concluded, "These results indicate relationships between patient self-reports of spirituality presurgery and an important proinflammatory and proangiogenic cytokine, as well as important psychosocial correlates of spirituality."