Scientific publications

The transitional survivorship in breast cancer: a narrative review

Oct 1, 2010 | Magazine: Revista de Enfermería

Vazquez-Calatayud M, Carrascosa-Gil R, Vivar CG.

This paper presents a review undertaken to explore the experiences of patients and families in the transition to breast cancer survivorship.

The transitional survivorship is defined as the period immediately after the end of treatment. During this period, breast cancer survivors aim to return to their new normality, but this time can be full of physical, emotional and social challenges for which the women may not feel prepared.

A narrative review was conducted in the databases MEDLINE, CINAHL, PSYCHINFO and CancerLit for the period 2000-2010. The search terms breast cancer, transition, survivorship, family: and experience were combined.

The main emerging categories that explained the experiences of breast cancer survivors during the transitional survivorship were new normality, the sense of loss, uncertainty about the future, loneliness and self-transcendence.

This review shows the importance of knowing the experiences of women with breast cancer during the transitional survivorship in order to meet their needs during this stage of the illness, so as to facilitate their transition into the next phase of survival. There is a lack of knowledge about the experiences of families during this stage of survival and the impact of family relationship on the transitional experiences of breast cancer survivors. Therefore, it seems relevant to focus on this area in future exploratory studies.

CITATION   2010 Oct;33(10):30-9