Why we need to modernise our emotional relationship with cancer

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Worrying news stories about people with cancer seem never-ending, from the famous (Kate Middleton and King Charles) to the not-so-famous (a local nurse, teacher or schoolchild). Small wonder. The condition is often cruel, and a common killer. It also has unique psychological characteristics that make it particularly fearsome.

We are more frightened by threats over which we feel we have no control, that cause great pain, that we have personally experienced and that feel imposed on us. More than any other disease, cancer triggers all those alarms, which helps explain why it has been the most dreaded illness

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