Investigator, Lady Davis Institute
Clinical and Administrative Coordinator, Louise-Granofsky Pyschosocial Oncology Program, Segal Cancer Centre, Jewish General Hospital
Assistant Professor, Oncology, McGill University
Dr. Sylvain Néron is the Clinical and Administrative Coordinator of the Louise Granofsky Psychosocial Oncology Program. A seasoned clinical psychologist who has worked with cancer patients for 17 years, Dr. Néron has recently incorporated a dedicated research focus into his work. He is developing scientific evidence for non-pharmacological techniques, such as clinical hypnosis, in improving symptom management and reducing anxiety and pain in cancer patients who are undergoing diagnostic and surgical procedures. The ultimate goal of his research is to empirically support psychosocial interventions, which may better the experiences of people living with cancer.
Major Research Activities
Dr. Néron is currently working on a pilot project with Dr. Té Vuong to study the effectiveness of hypnosis in reducing anxiety and pain of colorectal cancer patients undergoing brachytherapy, a novel form of radiation therapy used as an adjuvant to surgery for locally advanced cancers. His research is important because hypnosis, when used in conjunction with local anesthesia, might reduce recovery time after surgery and improve the emotional experience of patients. His work contributes to the small, but growing, body of empirical evaluations of clinical hypnosis in a medical setting.
The second ongoing project is qualitative research aimed at exploring colorectal cancer patients’ experiences undergoing brachytherapy, which has been reported to be painful and discomforting. He has obtained semi-structured interviews from French and English-speaking patients who are being treated with brachytherapy at the Jewish General Hospital’s Radiation Oncology Clinic. The objective of this study is to learn the self-expressed needs of this population, and how and when to apply future psychosocial interventions that can be integrated into the medical setting.
Finally, Dr. Néron is about to begin working on a project developing and validating a clinical diagnostic tool that will illuminate the experiences of patients and the meanings they attribute to their illness. This work aims at strengthening the concept of patient centred medicine, in that it acknowledges the patient’s experiences as crucial in defining health.
Néron, S., Aubin, S. , Rosberger, Z. (2010). « Contribution de l’onco-psychologue au Programme d’oncologie psychosociale Louise Granofsky. » Psychologie Québec/ Dossier 27 (3): 34-38.
Néron, S, Correa JA, Dajczman E, Kasymjanova G, Kreisman H, Small D. (2007) “Screening for Depressive Symptoms in Patients with Unresectable Lung Cancer.” Support Care Cancer, 1207–1212.
Néron, S. & Stephenson, R., (2007) “Effectiveness of Hypnotherapy in Cancer Patients’ Treatment Trajectory: Emesis, Acute Pain, Analgesia and Anxiolysis in Procedures, Special Issue on Evidence-Based Hypnotherapy for the International Journal of Clinical and Experimental Hypnosis,” International Journal of Clinical and Experimental Hypnosis, 55(3): 336–354.