Breast cancer survivors: information and support after treatment.Clin Nurs Res. 2007 Nov; 16(4):278-93; discussion 294-301.CN
Women living with and beyond breast cancer have special health care needs. Persistent physical and psychological symptoms such as fatigue, pain, sleep disturbances, and fear of recurrence as well as quality-of-life outcomes have been described in women during and after breast cancer. Much less information exists on the experience of women completing treatment. This study describes the information and support needs of women following breast cancer treatment. A semistructured interview guide designed by the research team was used to gather data. Major findings indicate that women continue to experience a variety of physical and psychological symptoms and have concrete information and support needs following therapy, including the need for information on persistent treatment effects, emotional distress, and lifestyle changes. Findings illustrate that there is need to provide comprehensive information and support to help women transition from breast cancer therapy. Additional research is needed to optimize approaches to providing posttreatment care.