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Biomed Pharmacother. 2000 Jun;54(5):229-33.

Life events, coping and breast cancer: state of the art.

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Ministry of Public Health, RAC, Psychiatric Healthcare Unit, Brussels, Belgium.


In this article the state of the art regarding the possible link between life events and the onset and/or prognosis of breast cancer is reviewed. We can conclude that at this moment there exists no evidence for the contribution of stressful life events to an increased risk of breast cancer in studies of good methodological quality. Only studies of weak methodological quality suggest a relationship between stressful life events and risk of breast cancer. There is a need for studies using a straightforward prospective design. The contribution of life events to the prognosis of breast cancer is small. However, the role of coping is much greater. Coping with the diagnosis of breast cancer in a passive way is associated with a shorter survival time. However, studies of good methodological quality will be needed to replicate the link between coping and the prognosis of breast cancer.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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