Anxiety 'can increase the risk of death from cancer in men'

21 September 2016

Men who suffer from anxiety are at a considerably heightened risk of dying from cancer compared to those who do not.

This is according to a new analysis of 15,938 British participants from the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer-Norfolk study, which linked men and women with generalised anxiety disorder to cancer deaths over a 15-year period.

It was found that men with generalised anxiety disorder were twice as likely to die of cancer as men who did not have anxiety, an association that was not observed among women. This held true even when taking age, major chronic diseases, serious mental illnesses, smoking, alcohol, physical activity and medication use into account.

Lead researcher Olivia Remes said: "With this study, we show that anxiety is more than just a personality trait, but rather it is a disorder that may be associated with risk of death from conditions, such as cancer."

Generalised anxiety disorder is a common problem affecting around five per cent of the adult population. It is characterised by excessive, uncontrollable worry and can cause muscle tension, insomnia, inability to concentrate and restlessness.

Posted by Philip Briggs


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