How long from depression to happy self?

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Question from Why Me: Since my diagnosis, I have been very depressed. Nothing seems to make me happy. Why do I feel this low, and how long before I can be my happy self again?
Answers - Patricia A. Ganz, M.D. Depression is a very common symptom of women at many times in their life and can occur after a serious diagnosis like breast cancer.

Research done with breast cancer patients and survivors has not found that there is a higher rate of depression after breast cancer. That is not to say that you may not have important symptoms that were precipitated by your diagnosis. There are very effective medications to help with depression and symptoms that you are describing, and these may be appropriate in helping you recover. In addition, finding a support group or a mental health specialist to talk about your concerns and mood would probably be helpful.
Marisa Weiss, M.D. Connecting with other women experts and each other can make a big difference. Please visit the Discussion Boards at There are a lot of people there that share some of your same concerns.

The Ask-the-Expert Online Conference called Quality of Life featured Patricia A. Ganz, M.D., and Marisa Weiss, M.D. answering your questions about how breast cancer can affect physical, emotional, social, and sexual aspects of your life.

Editor's Note: This conference took place in October 2001.

The materials presented in these conferences do not necessarily reflect the views of A qualified healthcare professional should be consulted before using any therapeutic product or regimen discussed. All readers should verify all information and data before employing any therapies described here.

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