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Articles Section Journal of Cognitive and Behavioral Psychotherapies, Vol. 10, No. 1, March 2010, 39-57. DEPRESSIVE SYMPTOMS, NEGATIVE LIFE EVENTS AND INCIDENCE OF LIFETIME TREATMENT OF CANCER IN THE HUNGARIAN POPULATION Csaba L. DEGI*1, Piroska BALOG2, Maria KOPP2, Éva KÁLLAY1, Julian F. THAYER3, Ellen L. CSIKAI4 ¹Babeş-Bolyai University, Cluj-Napoca, Romania 2 Semmelweis University, Budapest, Hungary 3 Ohio State University, Ohio, USA 4 The University of Alabama, Alabama, USA Abstract Cancer incidence and mortality rates in Hungary are the highest in the Central-Eastern European region. Our investigative study examined associations of cancer-prone behavioral risk factors, psychosocial variables and demographic characteristics with cancer treatment on a population level. Data were obtained from the Hungarostudy 2002, a cross-sectional, representative survey of the adult Hungarian population (n=12643). Controlling for all other study variables in a binary logistic regression model, results revealed that the odds of having been treated for cancer were almost twice as high among persons with depression and respondents who experienced negative life events than for those who were not depressed and reported no negative life events. These results send a warning signal to the Hungarian health care system regarding the widespread need for education, prevention, psycho-social screening programs and treatment of depression. Keywords: depression, negative life events, cancer treatment, population study In Hungary, cancer incidence (772.24 per 100 000) and cancer mortality (263.81 per 100 000) rates are the highest in the Central-Eastern European region and among the highest in international comparative analyses based on epidemiological data (Gárdos, 2002; WHO, 2006). Also, prevalence of clinical depression (score 19 and higher on the Beck Depression Inventory) in the Hungarian population has been increasing since 1988 when it was 7.5%. The prevalence rose to 14.1% in 1995 and 16.5% in 2002 (Balo & Purebl, 2008). While the associations between psychosocial variables and cancer have been relatively thoroughly-studied in general, no research has specifically addressed these relationships within the Hungarian population. The national representative * Correspondence concerning this article should be addressed to: E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org Depressive symptoms and cancer incidence 39 Articles Section survey (Hungarostudy 2002) provided a valuable
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