Sunday, March 3, 2013

PTSD and cancer diagnoses

I honestly do not believe they needed a study for this one but did so now they can say its true. A recent study examined women diagnosed with breast cancer from 2006-2010 and found that 23% reported PTSD symptoms shortly after diagnosis. This rate was higher for Black, Asian  or under 50 women and apparently the symptoms decline over time.

My comments (because I had to have an opinion) are that:
  • I do not think it is isolated to breast cancer patients. I think its probably across all cancer diagnoses and they just have not done a study yet to prove it.
  • I think the people who say they did not have PTSD were still stressed. A cancer diagnosis is not something you can bury inside you and not react. 
  • Although the symptoms may fade over time, the person with the diagnosis has to learn to cope with the ongoing fears of cancer's return for life.
Ask anyone who has had a cancer diagnosis and talk to them about the stress of diagnosis and fear of recurrence or new diagnosis, and they can tell you without the need for a study. 


Stephanie said...

I took care of my dad during the very intensive ten weeks he fought brain cancer and think I have PTSD; seeing him - a competitive Ironman triathlete - be changed into someone so sick, so dependent, and so frail literally overnight and having to struggle to navigate the care he needed was shocking and traumatic, in every sense of the words. I wonder if a study about PTSD has been done on caregivers too. said...

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