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Psychosocial disorders in women undergoing postoperative radiation and chemotherapy for breast cancer in India

Author(s): Khan M | Bahadur A | Agarwal P | Sehgal A | Das B

Journal: Indian Journal of Cancer
ISSN 0019-509X

Volume: 47;
Issue: 3;
Start page: 296;
Date: 2010;
Original page

Keywords: Breast cancer | breast surgery | chemotherapy | psychosocial impact | quality of life | radiotherapy

Background: Breast cancer is the most common cancer in urban India, but no study has been carried out on psychosocial disorders in breast cancer patients. Aims: The present study has been undertaken to evaluate behavioural and psychosocial impacts before and after treatment of women with breast cancer. Settings and Design: The study was carried out in a reputed hospital in Delhi. Patients and Methods: A total of 97 breast cancer patients matched for age and economic status were divided into group A (66) and group B (31) on the basis of treatment modalities offered to the patient. These women were interviewed, before and after the treatment, and the observations were recorded in a pre-tested structured questionnaire. Statistical Analysis: Chi-square test and Fisher′s exact test were used to calculate statistical significance. Results: Although the extent of sociobehavioral disorders were higher in patients on postoperative adjuvant chemotherapy and radiotherapy when compared with those on postoperative adjuvant chemotherapy alone, the difference was, however, not statistically significant. Psychological reactions were observed in 31% of patients but after intervention, 65% showed adjustment within 4 to 12 weeks, whereas the rest showed late adjustments. Conclusions: Breast disfigurement and sexuality were found to be least important, but psychological and social support appears to significantly influence the treatment outcome and rehabilitation of breast cancer patients in India.
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