09/09/2010 // US // Get Cancer Answers // News Desk

U.S. – A recent study suggests a key ingredient in hallucinogenic mushrooms may be beneficial for cancer patients. As reported by HealthDay News, researchers in a small pilot study found the compound psilocybin may aid in reducing anxiety in patients with advanced stages of cancer.

Dr. Amy Abernethy, director of the Duke University Cancer Care Research Program in Durham, N.C., is quoted in the report as stating of possible implications for continued study in this area, “We know that with some people with advanced life-threatening illness, there is very truly a substantial existential component and importance and need for meaning-making in life, and that until people start making that transition they can be very, very distressed. It can be hard to get back to the business-of-life closures and other things you need to do at the end of life. This kind of intervention [may] allow people time and space and extended cognitive ability to reflect on life and see it in a different way, make that transition and then get back into a more relaxed space and get back to the business of living.”

More information about the research may be available in the online publication of the Archives of General Psychiatry.

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