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J Clin Psychiatry. 1989 Nov;50 Suppl:20-5.

Anxiety and cancer: the patient and the family.

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Department of Psychiatry, Cornell University Medical Center, New York.


The normal fears and uncertainties associated with the diagnosis of cancer are often quite severe and include fear of death, pain, disfigurement, disability, and disruption of relationships. Although these fears are common to most cancer patients and their families, the level of psychologic distress experienced varies among patients, families, and close family members. It is important to distinguish between "reasonable fears" and more severe fears that may indicate the presence of an anxiety disorder and to recommend appropriate interventions to relieve distress.

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