Objective: There have been no previous studies about consultation of the bereaved who have lost a loved one to cancer and ask for medical help. The aim of this study was to investigate their basic characteristics and their psychiatric disorders. Methods: A retrospective study using clinical and background data obtained over 30 months (from April 2007 to September 2009) was conducted at outpatient services for bereaved families at the Department of Psycho-Oncology at Saitama Medical University International Medical Center, Japan. Results: During the period of investigation, 51 patients underwent consultation. The patients were frequently female (P< 0.0001) and the spouse of the deceased. Regarding the psychiatric diagnoses, major depression was the most common (39%), followed by adjustment disorders (28%). Conclusions: This study revealed basic characteristics and psychiatric disorders of the bereaved who asked for medical help. Most of the patients were women (86.3%) and 86.3% of them received a psychiatric diagnosis. This information is important for both physicians and psychologists since the bereaved who have lost a loved one to cancer often ask for medical help in clinical settings.
ASJC Scopus subject areas