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  2. Vol 7, No 1 (2023)
  3. Osita Victor Ossai

Depressive and anxiety symptoms among Nigerian rural women diagnosed with cervical cancer

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  • September 4, 2023
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Depression, anxiety symptoms, cervical cancer, rural women


Among women in Nigeria, cervical cancer has been found to be more prevalent among the rural population. Depression and anxiety are common symptoms among patients during their initial diagnosis and subsequent treatment. The main study objective was to ascertain whether depression or anxiety symptoms are common among patients of cervical cancer in rural communities in Enugu State, Nigeria. The study utilized semi-structured questionnaires in conducting a descriptive study on 148 consenting cervical cancer patients. Graphs, Chi-squares, and percentages were used to represent the data. In total, 148 patients had their data collected by the researcher. This study found that respondents manifested severe depression after their initial cervical cancer screenings. The report shows that 55% of respondents experienced severe depression after being diagnosed with cervical cancer.  Most of them—85 (57%)—were over 35 years of age.  Following a cervical cancer diagnosis, 52% of respondents reported severe anxiety symptoms. It is possible to say that after cervical cancer diagnosis, patients are prone to serious psychological distress. This is closely linked to the dreadful thought processes that herald the initial screening. Social support and counselling are urgently needed before and after cervical cancer screening.

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