New York: Researchers have concluded that stressful events are not linked to cancer, and that people suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) are not at risk of developing the deadly disease.
The large population sample study conducted by Boston University School of Medicine (BUSM) researchers also found no strong evidence of associations, even among select groups of the population.
‘The general public may believe that stress causes cancer,’ said corresponding author Jaimie L. Gradus, an assistant professor of psychiatry and epidemiology.
‘However, this study found no evidence that a severe chronic stress disorder like PTSD is associated with cancer incidence,’ he added.
According to the researchers, the large sample size and long study period allowed them to look at previously unstudied associations, such as rare cancer outcomes and associations among important subgroups.
Researchers compared the rate of various cancer diagnoses among people with PTSD to the general population’s standardised cancer rate during the same time period.
For more than 70 years, scientists have debated the relationship between stress and cancer.
Despite plausible theories that would support this association, clinical research findings have been mixed.
The study was published in the European Journal of Epidemiology.q