Body Image and Sexual Problem in Young Breast Cancer Patients in South Indian Population

  • Singh A
  • Rana R
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OBJECTIVES: The purpose of this study was to determine the frequency of body image and sexual problems after 12 month of follow up among women diagnosed with breast cancer at age 35 or younger. Types of breast cancer treatment effect physical appearance as loss of the body part, disfigurement, scars or skin changes. The goal of this paper is to comprehend the body image and sexual distress of newly diagnosed younger survivors. METHODS: A multi-ethnic population-based sample of 72 out of 124 women aged 21-35 who were married or in a stable unmarried relationship were interviewed with in situ, or regional breast cancer. The women participating in this study were underwent treatment from 2003 to 2013 at 2 different hospitals located in south India. RESULTS: Body image and sexual problems were experienced by a substantial proportion of women after diagnosis or treatment. Different type of treatment patterns were used as 59 (81.94%) women underwent surgery, 39 (54.1%) were treated with CMF chemotherapy, 54 (72.2%) women underwent hormonal therapy and remaining with radiotherapy. The Hopwood Body Image Scale was used for the assessment of the body image perception which shown less physically attraction in most of the patients with self-consciousness, seeing themselves naked in mirror and dissatisfied with scars on their body. The Female Sexual Distress Scale (FSDS) was used to assess the sexual distress in women with breast cancer. The mean score was 24.4 (47%) which relatively shows higher sexual distress with the major sexual problem; distress about sex life, Frustration by the sexual problems, Dissatisfaction with sex life and inferiority because of sexual problem among the women. CONCLUSIONS: Difficulties related to body image and sexuality were common and occurred soon after surgical and adjuvant treatment. Addressing these problems is essential to improve the quality of life of young women with breast cancer.




Singh, A., & Rana, R. (2015). Body Image and Sexual Problem in Young Breast Cancer Patients in South Indian Population. Value in Health, 18(7), A824.

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