Send to

Choose Destination
J Surg Oncol. 2015 Mar;111(3):258-64. doi: 10.1002/jso.23829. Epub 2014 Dec 29.

A prospective study of mastectomy patients with and without delayed breast reconstruction: long-term psychosocial functioning in the breast cancer survivorship period.

Author information

Lawrence S. Bloomberg Faculty of Nursing, University of Toronto, Toronto, Canada; Women's College Research Institute, Toronto, Canada; Faculty of Medicine, Department of Surgery in the Division of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, University of Toronto, Toronto, Canada.



For women who have mastectomy, breast reconstruction is an option which may improve psychosocial functioning. The purpose of this study was to evaluate changes in psychosocial functioning over a long follow-up period after mastectomy, specifically examining the differences between those with mastectomy alone and those who underwent postmastectomy delayed breast reconstruction (DBR).


This was a prospective longitudinal survey study of women with mastectomy in which a repeated measures design was used to compare psychosocial function scores over 3 timepoints: 1) pre-mastectomy; 2) one year post-mastectomy; and 3) long-term post-mastectomy (mean 6.3 years). In addition, psychosocial functioning was compared between the mastectomy alone group and the group who elected for DBR.


67 women who completed questionnaires at all three time points were included. The long-term follow-up time post-mastectomy was 75.2 months (6.3 years). Twenty-eight women (41.8%) underwent DBR in the study period. For the entire cohort, between one-year and long-term post-mastectomy, there were significant improvements in scores for body concerns (P = 0.03), cancer-related distress (P = 0.01), and total distress (P = 0.04). At long-term follow-up, women with DBR had significantly higher levels of total distress (P = 0.01), obsessiveness (P = 0.03), and cancer-related distress (P = 0.02) compared to those with mastectomy alone. There were no differences in quality of life between the two groups at any time point.


Psychosocial functioning improves over time in patients treated with mastectomy in the long-term breast cancer survivorship period, which may be related to the effect of time post-treatment, rather than an effect of choice for or against DBR.


Breast cancer surgery; Cognitive and emotional status; Plastic surgery

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Wiley
Loading ...
Support Center