Skip to main content
  • Poster presentation
  • Open access
  • Published:

Depression at the patients' diagnosis with cancer


Cancer is the second likeliest cause of mortality in Greece. There are 3.500-4000 new cases per year. The literature suggests that major depression is present in 25% of cancer patients.

Materials and methods

We interviewed 100 patients with different types of cancer and 100 healthy people without cancer as a control group (January-Jul 2005). The Hamilton Depression Rating Scale was used to quantify depression severity.


41% of the patients fulfilled the diagnostic criteria for Major Depressive Disorder according to DSM-IV-TR in comparison with only 4% of the control group control. This significant difference suggests that cancer is significantly related to the development of depression. The severity of depression is not related to the type of cancer or to gender. However there was a strong relationship between depression and age.


Depression is an important problem in patients with cancer and intense treatment is necessary.


  1. Mainio A, Hakko H, Timonen M, Niemelä A, Koivukangas J, Räsänen P: Depression in relation to survival among neurosurgical patients with a primary brain tumor: a 5-year follow-up study. Neurosurgery. 2005, 56: 1234-1241. 10.1227/01.NEU.0000159648.44507.7F.

    Article  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  2. Kua J: The prevalence of psychological and psychiatric sequelae of cancer in the elderly - how much do we know?. Ann Acad Med Singapore. 2005, 34: 250-256.

    CAS  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  3. Klopfer B: Psychological variables in human cancer. J Proj Tech. 1957, 21: 331-340.

    Article  CAS  PubMed  Google Scholar 

Download references

Author information

Authors and Affiliations


Rights and permissions

Open Access This article is published under license to BioMed Central Ltd. This is an Open Access article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 International License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Reprints and permissions

About this article

Cite this article

Hashorva, A., Bekteshi, I. & Petrela, E. Depression at the patients' diagnosis with cancer. Ann Gen Psychiatry 7 (Suppl 1), S96 (2008).

Download citation

  • Published:

  • DOI: