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Breast Cancer Res Treat. 1983;3(4):377-82.

Psychosocial and physical outcomes of primary breast cancer therapy: mastectomy vs excisional biopsy and irradiation.


Thirty-eight patients treated for primary breast cancer as part of a prospective randomized clinical trial were questioned retrospectively as to their psychosocial adaptation to treatment. Twenty patients had received mastectomy and eighteen had received excisional biopsy plus radiation of the intact breast. Aside from body image concerns, there were no marked psychosocial differences detected between these groups. Previous studies emphasizing serious psychological problems in mastectomy patients and fewer such problems in nonmastectomy patients may be influenced by biases that are not present in a randomized study design.

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