Include psycho-oncology in cancer care, say doctors

Three out of five cancer patients experience severe psychological distress warranting medical intervention, doctors in the city said, urging the inclusion of psycho-oncology in mainstream cancer treatment.

“Cancer brings tremendous psychological distress on patients and families,” said
Dr Brindha Sitaram, Group Director, and psycho-oncology service. She pointed to a nationwide study which showed that 92% of patients experienced psychological distress of varying magnitude.

“Psycho-oncology addresses the psychological issues and concerns of cancer patients and their families. It must be included in the mainstream cancer care,” Dr Brindha said.

On World Mental Health Day, HCG organised a scientific session to spread awareness and highlight the need for psychological assistance to cancer patients and their families.

Cancer patients have four times the risk of suicide than ordinary people, which could be managed by addressing their psychological needs, doctors said.

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