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Anxiety Disorders 

Anxiety Disorders
Chapter:
Anxiety Disorders
Source:
Psycho-Oncology (3 ed.)
Author(s):

Joseph A. Greer

, James MacDonald

, and Lara Traeger

DOI:
10.1093/med/9780199363315.003.0039

Anxiety is among the most common forms of psychological distress that patients with cancer experience. Anxiety disorders can cause marked impairment in patient functioning as well as potentially compromising decision-making and participation in cancer treatment. This chapter reviews the nature, diagnostic characteristics, and common assessment methods of anxiety in patients with cancer, and reviews the evidence-based pharmacological and psychosocial interventions to treat anxiety. Specific cancer-related considerations that may influence the evaluation and treatment of anxiety are highlighted. As part of a comprehensive cancer care team, oncology and mental health clinicians share the responsibility to develop systems for identifying debilitating anxiety symptoms, conducting biopsychosocial assessments, and providing referral for efficacious treatments of anxiety in patients with cancer. With appropriate assessment and intervention, patients can experience clinically meaningful reductions in anxiety, enhanced quality of life, and increased capacity to engage in their cancer care.

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