National

Princess afflicted by adjustment disorder

Crown Princess Masako is suffering an adjustment disorder, the Imperial Household Agency said Friday.

She has faced stress “caused by her special status as Crown Princess, problems relating to her pregnancy and miscarriage, and the difficulties in drawing a line between the public and private elements of her busy life,” the agency told a news conference.

The Princess’ doctors have focused mainly on mental therapy and drug treatment, according to Hideki Hayashida, grand master of the Crown Prince’s Household. The psychological condition is a reaction to identifiable sources of stress.

Sources said that after consulting with her doctors, the Crown Princess decided to have her condition be made public.

“While her situation is improving, she still suffers from symptoms such as anxiety,” Hayashida said.

He added that her doctors felt confident that her condition would not deteriorate even if the agency went public with the information.

He said that the team of doctors treating the Crown Princess were experts in mental disorders, “including (doctors) venerated as those who represent Japan” in the field.

But he refrained from mentioning names or specifying exactly how many doctors were in the group.

The team reported its conclusions on the Crown Princess’ condition several days ago, according to Hayashida.

Emperor Akihito and Empress Michiko were informed of the situation ahead of the agency’s news conference, agency officials said.

The Princess’ health drew media attention after her husband, Crown Prince Naruhito, hinted at the royal pressures on her lifestyle in unusually candid remarks in May, when he said, “There were developments that denied Masako’s past career as a diplomat as well as her personality.”

Media reports had said the Princess was suffering depression.

Crown Princess Masako, 40, was a career diplomat before marrying the Crown Prince in 1993. She has taken no official duties since December, following a bout of shingles, or taken part in internal events at the Imperial Palace, including celebrations marking the Emperor’s 70th birthday. The couple have a 2-year-old daughter, Princess Aiko.

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