More than Chemobrain?
By now, virtually everyone knows about chemobrain and acknowledges that it can be areal problem. The general blunting of mental acuity, difficulties with memory and word-finding, and a sense of fuzziness are issues for many people going through active cancer treatment. For some people, these problems persist for some time, and I have known a few women who felt that they never regained their pre-cancer intellectual abilities. Whether this is true and, if so, whether the decline is due to treatment of some combination of aging, diminished estrogen, and stress is impossible to truly differentiate.
As reported by Robin Rabin in The New York Times, a new study suggests that sometimes the problems may be even greater. Here is a quote from Ms Rabin and then a link to read more:
October 11, 2010
Mental Health: Fog May Be From Cancer, Not the Chemo
By Roni Caryn Rabin
Researchers analyzed data gathered from 2001 to 2006 by the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey on 9,819 adults ages 40 and older, of whom 1,305 reported a history of cancer.
Participants answered questions including "Are you limited in any way because of difficulty remembering or because you experience periods of confusion?"
While 8 percent of the respondents who had never had cancer reported impairment, 14 percent of those with a history of cancer reported problems. After controlling for differences between the groups, like age, education and overall health, researchers concluded that people with a history of cancer were 40 percent more likely to report memory impairment.