Tuesday August 21, 2018

Nerve Cell Cancer Survivors, At Higher Risk Of Developing Depression

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

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

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Taking Care of Mental Health Problems in Children, may Boost Parent’s Mental Health Too

When the severity of a teenagers's depression lessened, so did similar symptoms in the parent, regardless of what treatment was used: Study

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walking, was associated with good self-perceived general health
walking, was associated with good self-perceived general health. Pixabay

The bond between parent and child extends far beyond sharing similar looks or behaviours as a new study suggests that treating depression in teenagers may benefit their parents’ mental health too.

The findings suggest that when a teenager’s depression improved through treatment, so did the depression experienced by his or her parents.

“Depression is a massive public health concern that will take a variety of approaches to better manage. We believe our study is among the first to evaluate how the emotional health of a child can impact that of the parents,” said co-author Mark A. Reinecke from the Northwestern University in the US.

For the study, presented at American Psychological Association’s 126th Annual Convention, the research team involved 325 teenagers who had been diagnosed with depression and 325 of their parents or caregivers.

The teenagers were randomly assigned to one of three groups — those who received cognitive behavioural therapy, those who took anti-depressants or those who used a combination of both.

Depression
More young people today are reporting persistent feelings of sadness and hopelessness and suicidal thoughts. Flickr

The first treatment period ran for nearly one year, with an additional year of follow-up visits, the researchers said.

One-quarter of the parents who participated also reported moderate to severe levels of depression before the treatment period, the researcher added.

The treatment process was not family-based, though some portions included the parent.

The researchers found a positive ripple effect because when the severity of a teenagers’s depression lessened, so did similar symptoms in the parent, regardless of what treatment was used.

Also Read: Molecule Deficiency May Help Diagnose Severe Depression

“More young people today are reporting persistent feelings of sadness and hopelessness and suicidal thoughts,” said Kelsey R. Howard from the varsity.

“This research may help health care providers as we grapple as a nation with how to address these alarming trends,” Howard noted. (IANS)