Background: Meaning Centered Psychotherapy (MCP) was developed by Breitbart and
collaborators for patients with advanced cancer and suffering from an existential distress in the face
of death. It was first settled in a group format (MCGP) and subsequently has been adapted to an
individualized format (IMCP). To this point, MCP is adapted to cancer caregivers (MCP-C), cancer
survivors (MCGP-CS), bereaved parents (MC-GT) and palliative care (MCP-PC). The goal of this
article is to review the framework of MCP and its subsequent adaptations.
Method: A nonsystematic review of a PubMed search of articles written in English, during 2000
Results: In 2010, Breitbart et al. published the first results of MCGP presenting it as an effective
intervention to improve spiritual well-being, quality of life (QoL) and to reduce hopelessness and
desire for hastened death in advanced cancer patients. Subsequent studies established the benefits of
IMCP and MCGP for the same outcomes. They also confirmed the potential of MCP-C to mitigate
caregiver burden, it´s efficacy improving personal meaning, psychological well-being and mental
adjustment, and MC-GT as a means to help parents recognize meaningful experiences as they cope
with grief. In the adaptation of MCP-PC, evidence suggests the feasibility, acceptability, and the
potential for improving coping in the face of end of life issues.
Conclusion: MCP has proven effectiveness in improving QoL, reducing hopelessness, and desire
for hastened death. The subsequent adaptations had positive outcomes, showing that meaning is
important in the face of any kind of suffering that imposes limitations on life.