Breast specific functional and symptom analysis in female breast cancer survivors
Shaqul Qamar Wani1, Talib Khan2, Saiful Yamin Wani3, Mohammad Ashraf Teli1, Nazir Ahmad Khan1, Liza Rafiq Mir3, Mohammad Maqbool Lone1, Fir Afroz1
1 Department of Radiation Oncology, Sher I Kashmir Institute of Medical Sciences, Srinagar, Jammu and Kashmir, India
2 Department of Anaesthesiology and Critical Care, Division of Anaesthesiology and Pain and Palliative Care, Sher I Kashmir Institute of Medical Sciences, Srinagar, Jammu and Kashmir, India
3 District Hospital Pulwama, Directorate of Health Services, Srinagar, Jammu and Kashmir, India
Department of Anaesthesiology and Critical Care Medicine, Division of Anaesthesiology and Pain and Palliative Care, Sher I Kashmir Institute of Medical Sciences, Soura, Srinagar, Jammu and Kashmir 190 011
Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None
Context: The disease and surgery of the breast not only evoke a fear of mutilation and loss of feminity but is also responsible for psychosocial, behavioral, and sexual problems.
Aim: To analyze prospectively the time trends in "breast specific functional and symptom scale scores in female breast cancer survivors."
Settings and Design: The prospective study was conducted in the Department of Radiation Oncology at Tertiary Referral Hospital.
Materials and Methods: A total of 154 operated (mastectomy) female breast cancer patients who were referred to the Department of Radiation Oncology for chemoradiation target therapy (trastuzumab) hormonal therapy (tamoxifen) were included in the study. Seven patients were excluded from the final analysis due to their refusal to consent. The patients were assessed by using European Organization for Research and Treatment of Cancer Quality of Life-BR23 questionnaire module (which incorporates five multi-item and three single items scales) at 1 st visit (0 month), 6, 12, and 24 months interval, respectively.
Results: The symptom scores and future perspectives scale showed improvement with time, but body image and sexual functioning and enjoyment scales showed the deteriorating trend. P < 0.05 was considered as significant.
Conclusion: The female breast cancer survivors failed to improve their body image, sexual functioning, and sexual enjoyment scales but did well in other BR23 scales. Besides the family and spousal/marital support these patients got closer to their religion which has been seen to influence their psychosocial well-being optimistically and need further studies to establish the role of religious practices/beliefs.