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Phobic Anxiety Linked to Sexual Problems in Breast Cancer Survivors

Phobic Anxiety Linked to Sexual Problems in Breast Cancer SurvivorsSexual function can be difficult after breast cancer treatment. (Learn more.) Many women feel little desire for sex or have trouble becoming lubricated enough for comfortable intercourse. They might have more trouble reaching orgasm than they did before having cancer. And emotional factors, like depression and poor body image, can influence sexuality as well.

Now, research suggests that phobic anxiety contributes to such issues, too.

You’ve probably heard the term phobia. The Anxiety and Depression Association of America defines phobia as a “strong irrational fear.” People with phobias are afraid of an object or activity, even though they know it poses no serious threat. They may try to avoid those objects or activities.

In September 2018, the journal Psycho-Oncology published a study of sixty women. Thirty women (average age 57) had been treated for breast cancer and had finished their treatment at least a year beforehand. The other group (average age 53) had no history of breast cancer.

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