Newly diagnosed cancer patients face an increased risk for suicide, as well as death from heart attack and stroke, according to research just published in the New England Journal of Medicine. The risk is greatest among those with the most deadly cancers, and is present even before treatment begins. The study is based on national health registry data collected about six million adult residents of Sweden between 1991 and 2006. Compared to people without a cancer diagnosis, people with cancer were 12 times more likely to die by suicide within a week of diagnosis and three times more likely to die by suicide within a year. People with the most deadly cancers were 16 times more likely to die by suicide within a week of diagnosis than those without cancer. Within a year of diagnosis, suicide risk had returned to pre-diagnosis level for all patients. According to a cancer expert and a psychiatrist who were interviewed for this article, the findings emphasize the need to remain vigilant for signs of depression among newly diagnosed cancer patients and to address patients’ emotional needs.