New Research: Understanding the Impact of Psychological Stress on Skin Cancer | Mole Check Clinic

New Research: Understanding the Impact of Psychological Stress on Skin Cancer

New Research: Understanding the Impact of Psychological Stress on Skin Cancer

April 26,2024

Psychological Stress on Skin Cancer

The new research introduces a novel perspective on the potential influences affecting skin cancer, particularly the non-melanoma types such as basal and squamous cell carcinoma. Traditionally, research has focused on the biological and environmental contributors to skin cancer. However, recent studies, including one titled “Neuroendocrine Factors: The Missing Link in Non-Melanoma Skin Cancer,” are beginning to explore how psychological stress may also play a significant role in both the development and progression of this disease.

The body’s response to stress involves several physiological pathways, mainly through the neuroendocrine system. Stress triggers the release of hormones like cortisol and adrenaline, designed to help us manage short-term difficulties. Yet, if these stress hormones are present at high levels over an extended period, they can negatively impact our health, including our skin. The research suggests that these neuroendocrine factors are more crucial in influencing skin cancer outcomes than previously believed

One of the more fascinating findings of the study is the potential role of psychological stress not only in worsening existing skin conditions but also in possibly initiating skin cancer. The researchers propose that stress may impair the immune system’s ability to combat cancerous cells effectively. Additionally, stress hormones could alter the rates of cell growth and death, crucial processes involved in cancer development.

Given the high global incidence of skin cancer, understanding the link between stress and skin cancer is vital. It points towards the necessity for comprehensive cancer prevention and treatment strategies that incorporate stress management. Such strategies could include practices like mindfulness and yoga, providing robust psychological support for individuals at high risk or those already undergoing treatment for skin cancer.

In conclusion, although traditional factors like sun exposure and genetics continue to be primary risks for skin cancer, the role of psychological stress should not be overlooked. This research underscores the importance of further investigations into how mental health affects physical health, especially concerning cancer. As this field of study expands, integrating mental well-being into cancer care could become an essential component of treatment plans aimed not just at combating cancer itself but also at managing the stress that may exacerbate its progression.


Lupu, M., Caruntu, A., Caruntu, C., Papagheorghe, L. M., Ilie, M. A., Voiculescu, V., Boda, D., Constantin, C., Tanase, C., Sifaki, M., Drakoulis, N., Mamoulakis, C., Tzanakakis, G., Neagu, M., Spandidos, D. A., Izotov, B. N., Tsatsakis, A. M.”Neuroendocrine factors: The missing link in non?melanoma skin cancer (Review)”. Oncology Reports 38.3 (2017): 1327-1340.