Teens unfazed by trauma of cancer

HEALTH
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The Independent Online
Teenagers cope with a diagnosis of cancer better than adults, according to a study. Those told they have the disease are no more anxious or depressed than their peers.

The study of teenagers diagnosed at the Middlesex Hospital, London, found 5 per cent had moderate to severe depression three weeks later, compared with 13 per cent of a group of healthy teenagers. Their parents had higher depression scores than the average. Ruth Allen, the Cancer Research Campaign's nursing fellow, who conducted the research, said: "Teenagers may be anxious and depressed about all sorts of things from family relationships to whether they have the right sort of trainers. We believe being diagnosed with cancer puts all these usual anxieties into the background and focuses their minds on what is important. Rather than being more stressed than usual, one set of worries is replaced by another."

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