Thursday February 21, 2019

Nerve Cell Cancer Survivors, At Higher Risk Of Developing Depression

The data were compared with the additional data from 872 siblings.

Nerve Cell Cancer Survivors, At Higher Risk Of Developing Depression
Nerve Cell Cancer Survivors, At Higher Risk Of Developing Depression, Pixabay

Researchers have found that patients who suffered from pediatric neuroblastoma — a childhood cancer of nerve cells — may have a higher risk of developing long term psychological difficulties, including depression and attention deficit disorders.

“These findings are novel because this is the first large study that could look at how neuroblastoma patients are doing in terms of psychological and educational outcomes,” said one of the researchers Nina Kadan-Lottick from Yale University School of Medicine in the US.

“Our hope is that these findings will help inform strategies for early screening and intervention to identify those survivors at highest risk for developing psychological and educational impairment later on in life,” Lottick explained.

The study, published in the journal Cancer, analysed data from 859 children who had been diagnosed with neuroblastoma at least five years earlier and were under 18 years old. The data were compared with the additional data from 872 siblings of these patients.

A nerve
A nerve, Representational image, flickr

The results showed that neuroblastoma survivors had 19 per cent increased prevalence of impairment in the domains of anxiety or depression as opposed to 14 per cent among the siblings.

The team also found that 19 per cent increased risk of headstrong behaviour among the patients as opposed to 13 per cent among the sibling group.

The patients group had 21 per cent higher prevalence of attention deficit disorders and 16 per cent higher risk of antisocial behaviour compared to 13 per cent and 12 per cent risk respectively in the sibling group.

Treatment advances in recent years have prolonged survival for many children diagnosed with neuroblastoma, but their young age at diagnosis and the specific therapies they receive can make them vulnerable to health problems as their central nervous system develops, the study said.

Mental patient
Mental patient, representational image, flickr

Also read: Finally the cause of depression among diabetes patients decoded

“The goal is not simply to get our patients to be cancer-free but also to optimise their mental, emotional, and social functioning as they move into adolescence and adulthood,” Lottick said. (IANS)

Next Story

Premature to Say Social Media Use Leads to Depression

Examining the role that these differences play will help clarify the ways in which social media interacts with mental health, with implications for parents, policymakers, and healthcare professionals alike, the study noted

carbon, digital
Multiple apps are displayed on an iPhone in New York.. VOA

Use of social media does not necessarily cause depressive symptoms later in adolescents and young adults, according to a recent research.

The study, however, showed that relatively higher depressive symptoms resulted due to more social media use later only among adolescent girls.

The latest study stands in contrast to recent claims that suggests teenagers’ use of social media could lead to depression.

“You have to follow the same people over time in order to draw the conclusion that social media use predicts greater depressive symptoms. By using two large longitudinal samples, we were able to empirically test that assumption,” said lead author Taylor Heffer from the Brock University in Canada.

For the study, the team surveyed 594 adolescents and 1,132 college undergraduates.

The results, published in Clinical Psychological Science, showed that social media use did not predict depressive symptoms later among adolescents or college undergraduates; rather, greater depressive symptoms predicted more social media use over time, but only among adolescent girls.

Depression is a common mental disorder. Flickr

“This finding contrasts with the idea that people who use a lot of social media become more depressed over time. Instead, adolescent girls who are feeling down may turn to social media to try and make themselves feel better,” said Heffer.

Overall, the research suggests that the fear surrounding social media use and its impact on mental health may be premature.

“When parents read media headlines such as ‘Facebook Depression’, there is an inherent assumption that social media use leads to depression,” added Heffer.

Also Read- Exercise Can Help Fight Against Deep Abdominal Belly Fat: Study

In addition, different groups of people use social media for different reasons including making social comparisons or while feeling down. While another group of people may use it for more positive reasons, such as keeping in contact with friends, according to the study.

Examining the role that these differences play will help clarify the ways in which social media interacts with mental health, with implications for parents, policymakers, and healthcare professionals alike, the study noted. (IANS)