MASAKO SUFFERS FROM 'ADJUSTMENT DISORDER'

30 JULY 2004

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Absent from public life for nearly eight months, Japan's Crown Princess Masako has been diagnosed as suffering from "adjustment disorder", the Imperial Household Agency has announced.

In the first medical explanation of Masako's condition, the Imperial Household Agency confirmed Crown Prince Naruhito's wife is undergoing treatment for the illness, characterised by an abnormal and excessive reaction to stress.

Masako has received therapy and medication, but is still showing signs of anxiety and "depressive feelings", said a representative. The mother-of-one's stress is caused by "her special status as crown princess, problems relating to her pregnancy and miscarriage, and her busy life, in which she has difficulties drawing a line between the public and the private," said the Agency.

Royal watchers have long speculated that Masako, 40, was having trouble adapting to the strict lifestyle required by Imperial Household Agency as well as the mounting pressure to produce a male heir following the birth of daughter Aiko in 2001. She retreated from the spotlight in December, 2003, amidst rumours of her declining mental health.

The Imperial Household Agency, who says Masako needs more time to rest, is apparently examining what the future will hold for the princess, stating: "We will consider revamping her official duties."

The crown princess has had a severe reaction to stress related to "her special status as crown princess", the Imperial Household Agency has confirmed. The 40-year-old royal, seen with her only child, daughter Aiko, has been absent from public life for nearly eight months

Photo: © AFP

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Photo: © Alphapress.com
The crown princess has had a severe reaction to stress related to "her special status as crown princess", the Imperial Household Agency has confirmed. The 40-year-old royal, seen with her only child, daughter Aiko, has been absent from public life for nearly eight monthsPhoto: © AFP Click on photo to enlarge
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