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To feel like an outsider: focus group discussions regarding the influence on sexuality caused by breast cancer treatment.

Publiceringsår: 2011
Språk: Engelska
Sidor: 728-737
Publikation/Tidskrift/Serie: European Journal of Cancer Care
Volym: 20
Nummer: 6
Dokumenttyp: Artikel i tidskrift
Förlag: John Wiley & Sons


The aftermath of breast cancer treatment, especially the sexual side effects, appears to be a neglected issue in developed society. The purpose of this study was to explore how middle-aged women treated for a breast cancer experienced their sexual identity connected to the community norms and values in the society as a whole. Three focus group interviews were conducted, with a total of 12 women. The discussions were analysed using qualitative content analysis. The main theme to feel like an outsider symbolises the women's situation after breast cancer treatment. They experienced their body in a wholly new unfamiliar way, which affected their sexuality in a deep and profound way. This feeling affected their female roles and overshadowed earlier experiences in life. All their female roles were suddenly vague and this was expressed in various ways across each of the four subthemes: to feel different, the unruly body, eroticism is not what it used to be and re-evaluating. From a nursing perspective, there appears to be a definite challenge to identify the women's own unique sexual needs in the rehabilitation transition and to use the skills from all team professionals to improve sexual health in this context.


  • Gender Studies
  • breast cancer
  • femininity
  • qualitative content analysis
  • sexuality


  • ISSN: 1365-2354

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