Managing the mental health impact of a metastatic breast cancer diagnosis

(BPT) - The stress of a cancer diagnosis can be overwhelming for patients, families and caregivers. And while each person’s response to hearing the words “you have cancer” may differ, feelings of stress, fear and unease are common. According to a study in the Journal of Clinical Oncology, one in three people with cancer experience mental or emotional distress, and these challenges appear most (42%) among women with breast cancer.

Mental health can often take a back seat when a person is prioritizing their physical health, but managing mental health is essential and may even have an impact on living with metastatic breast cancer. Studies have shown that a decrease in symptoms of depression was associated with longer life in patients with metastatic breast cancer (MBC).

For Linda Carey, who has been living with MBC since 2006, having a community around her has been key to her well-being. “Your community and loved ones can be valuable sources of support and light in your metastatic breast cancer experience.”

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