Easing the Trauma of Terminal Illness

Something was gnawing at Manish Agrawal, MD. Every day, the oncologist treated patients with standard cancer therapies, but his care could never touch their deepest pains: their despair about death. “In 20 years, I’ve treated close to 100,000 patients,” Agrawal says, “and the one thing I know we don’t do well is dying.” Hospitalist Shoshana … Read more

The Hidden Dangers of Pathologizing Grief

The Weekend That I graduated from law school, my mother told me that she had amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, also known as ALS or Lou Gehrig’s disease, a neurological disease for which there is currently no cure. As I recalled in a recent essay, I spent the following year watching as her muscles atrophied until she … Read more

High Suicide, Depression Risks for Patients With Cancer

Living with cancer can be emotionally devastating. Now, two expansive studies underscore the scale of the burden a cancer diagnosis and treatment can have on patients’ mental health and risk of suicide. In one, a meta-analysis of 28 studies that included more than 22 million patients, researchers found that among people with cancer, the suicide … Read more