National Alliance on Mental Illness
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Cancer and Mental Illness

September 11, 2007

The Washington Post  reports thatateam from the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston found that at least 50 percent of patients with advanced or terminal cancer are suffering from anxiety, depression or an adjustment disorder. Unfortunately, less than half receive the help they need.

The researchers highlight the need to incorporate mental health care into the treatment plans for patients, as depression and anxiety can compromise a one’s quality of life, perhaps more so than physical pain. They also point out that oncologists and physicians can screen cancer patients for mental illness and refer patients for treatment and support groups.

Additional Resources

Information about Major Depression

Anxiety Disorder Fact Sheet