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Anxiety and Depression 

Anxiety and Depression
Chapter:
Anxiety and Depression
Author(s):

Jaroslava Salman

, Emma Wolfe

, and Sunita K. Patel

DOI:
10.1093/med/9780190862374.003.0022
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date: 18 October 2019

Patients with advanced, incurable disease are vulnerable to emotional distress. While some level of psychological struggle is expected and understandable, the distinction between appropriate reaction to functional decline and dying and more serious psychiatric condition is often challenging. Depressive and anxiety symptoms are common but can be misunderstood, underdiagnosed, and untreated if not properly recognized and distinguished from milder forms of emotional reactions. For patients who are suffering, there are different modalities of treatment that can be used effectively, whether it is psychotropic medications; nonpharmacological interventions, such as psychotherapy or alternative supportive interventions; or some combination of the above. Providing patients and their families with education on psychological distress and ways to manage it can help empower them and relieve their suffering.

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