Evaluating the Relationship of Fatigue to Depression and Anxiety in Cancer Patients
Clinicians and researchers have been challenged to understand how fatigue may be related to depression and anxiety in patients with cancer. The need to understand this relationship stems from two basic facts: fatigue, in addition to being a symptom of cancer and its treatment, is a symptom of certain mood and anxiety disorders and depression and anxiety, like fatigue, are relatively common among cancer patients. This chapter asks several questions. First, what are the conceptual similarities and differences between fatigue, depression, and anxiety? Second, to what extent do depression and anxiety co-occur with fatigue, and how might they be distinguished? Third, what are the possible causal relationships between fatigue and depression and between fatigue and anxiety? Fourth, what are the treatment implications of the relationship of fatigue to depression and anxiety?
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