Stress and Anxiety Can Affect Prostate Cancer Treatments Negatively

February 4, 2013 by  
Filed under Prostate Cancer News

If you have prolonged psychological stress, you are more likely to have an unfavorable outcome with prostate cancer treatment. This observation has been noted by experts in the wake of a recent animal study that reveal behavioral stress promotes tumor progression.

Denise Reynolds RD once again highlighted this point in an article posted January 31, 2013 in eMaxHealth. Reynolds states that:

Psychological stress describes how people feel emotionally when they are under pressure. But the effects do not stop in the brain.

The body responds to this pressure by releasing hormones such as epinephrine and norepinephrine that increase blood pressure, speed heart rate and raise blood sugar levels.

There is also evidence that stress during cancer can shorten the length of telomeres, the ends of chromosomes that deteriorate with aging which is linked to a shorter lifespan.”

More so, this observation can readily be linked with the findings of researchers at Wake Forest University that revealed that stressed mice exhibited reduced response to anti cancer drug unlike unstressed mice.

More so, The authors note that men with prostate cancer seem to be affected by their diagnosis more than other cancer patients, exhibiting higher levels of anxiety. Levels of PSA also have been observed to increase in patients under behavioral stress.

Drugs that block the effects of adrenaline, such as beta-blockers (used for the treatment of high blood pressure), appeared to reduce the risk of prostate cancer by 18% indicating that this medication could be useful to increase the effectiveness of anti-cancer therapies.

Emotional and social support can also help cancer patients cope with psychological stress. Approaches can include relaxation training, meditation, counseling, support groups, anti-depression/anti-anxiety medications, or exercise, including mind-body techniques such as yoga or tai chi.

Conclusively, from the previous paragraphs, the effects of stress in prostate cancer cannot be undermined. The suggested emotional and social support can be applied to help ease stress for men diagnosed with prostate cancer.

It is very possible that when treatments are applied under a relaxed condition there is going to be better response and improved quality of life. Read more about this in the post made by Denise Reynolds RD.

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