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I survived, but now I have anxiety and post-traumatic stress disorder
Sep 27, 2002

Hello:

Thanks fro your answer to the 16 May question about life expetancy. I needed that. I was diagnosed with Hodgkin's disease and HIV the same day--the same phone call--in Dec. 2000. I did 8 mos. of biopsies/tests/chemo/and radiation, and started HAART therapy at teh same time. I am cancer-free and doing OK. I just didn't know "what will happen next" and have been being treated for anxiety and Post-traumatic stress disorder (after, within a month of my diagnoses, I witnessed a terrible accident at my workplace, where I supervise 100 people and 600 children). I agree, the anxiety and depression is "almost" as bad as the illnesses. I really want to live a long and healthy life. I don't drink, smoke, and I am in a committed and safe relationship. I turn 40 this year, and I hope I live to 90. Your forum has helped me several times. Thanks for all you do.

Response from Dr. Dezube

Congratulations on surviving. Anxiety and even post-traumatic stress are NOT unusual in cancer survivors. In time, as the years pass, your anxiety level should go down. Each year that you are farther and farther out from your chemotherapy, you'll be able to breath a deeper sigh of relief. If the anxiety and/or post-traumatic stress disorder are interfering with your life, then I would recommend either talking to a mental health counselor or taking anti-anxiety drugs or both (therapy plus anti-anxiety drugs). I also hope that you live to 90.


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