Prophylactic Surgery to Reduce the Risk of Developing Breast Cancer:Issues and Clinical Implications
Elisabetta De Matteis,
Women with BRCA1/2 mutations are at increased risk of developing breast and ovarian cancer. Options to manage this risk are intensive surveillance, chemoprevention, and risk-reducing surgery which includes, risk reduction mastectomy (bilateral or contralateral) and risk reduction salpingo-oophorectomy.
Here we reported an overview of the current literature regarding efficacy of risk-reduction surgery, its acceptability and psychological implications.
We found that majority of studies reported that: risk-reduction surgery has been proven to be effective in reducing breast and ovarian cancer risk up to 90%, women who choose surgery have diminished anxiety about cancer risk, and experience few psychological difficulties, but physical complication and alteration in body image, sexual life are often reported.
In conclusion, we could state that decisions about surgery are influenced by several factors, mostly psychological, women need to be counselled about the decision to undergo risk-reduction surgery and multidisciplinary approaches are needed. Potential negative effects should be discussed thoroughly with each woman considering this procedure. Careful psychological follow-up after the surgery should be scheduled.
Keywords: Breast cancer, effectiveness, high-risk women, psychological implications, risk-reduction mastectomy, BRCA2, BRCA1, BRCA1/2 mutations, chemoprevention
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