(1) the psychological responses of patients to cancer at all stages of the disease, and that of their families and caretakers; and (2) the psychological, behavioral and social factors that may influence the disease process.
The dimensions of psycho-oncology have changed as more children and adults have earned the title of cancer survivor. The impact of cancer is far greater than the millions of new cancer cases worldwide each year. Many cancer patients remain out of sight of the health services due to societal stigma and lack of resources to diagnose, treat and support.
Regardless of the prognosis, cancer is a cause of anxiety and depression in more than one-third of the cancer patients. Cancer has a profound effect on the function of the family in both social and economic terms. Across our globe there are inequality and differences in all aspects of cancer. Cancer incidence and survival are related to socio-economic status but also on the individual level we distinguish between individual differences and effects of the cancer experience.
Psycho-oncology is highly multi-disciplinary. It shares boundaries and interests with the major specialties within oncology including the clinical disciplines (such as surgery, internal medicine, pediatrics, and radiotherapy), cancer epidemiology, immunology, endocrinology, cancer biology, pathology, bioethics, palliative care, rehabilitation medicine, clinical trials research, experimental design, clinical decision making and, of course, psychiatry and psychology. Cancer is, after all, a disease of both the body and the mind.
- Psychodynamic therapy
A type of psychotherapy that draws on psychoanalytic theory to help people understand the roots of emotional distress, often by exploring unconscious motives, needs, and defenses.
Caused by the mind or emotions.
The study of the connections between the mind and the immune system. The basic concept of psychoimmunology is the concept that the mind and body are inseparable. It follows that stress affects the body’s ability to resist disease. The brain influences all sorts of physiological processes once thought not to be centrally regulated. There are […]
- Psychological child abuse
Also known as emotional child abuse, this is the third most frequently reported form of child abuse (after child neglect and physical child abuse), accounting 17% of all cases of child abuse. It is likely that emotional child abuse is greatly underreported, since it can be difficult to detect and difficult to document. Emotional child […]
- Psychological imprinting
A remarkable phenomenon that occurs in animals, and theoretically in humans, in the first hours of life. The newborn creature bonds to the type of animals it meets at birth and begins to pattern its behavior after them. In humans, this is often called bonding, and it usually refers to the relationship between the newborn […]