Breast reconstruction has been shown to improve quality of life in women following mastectomy for breast cancer. To date, there have been no published prospective reports looking at the effect nationality has on patient quality of life following breast reconstruction.
Women from the USA, Sweden and Canada were recruited prior to reconstruction and followed prospectively for 1 year postoperatively. Thirteen centres with 24 plastic surgeons were involved. Preoperatively and 1 year postoperatively, women completed the Short Form-36 questionnaire. Data were analysed using t-tests and analysis of variance.
A total of 313 women were followed up. American women who had immediate expander/implant surgery were compared with Swedish patients, whilst Americans who had undergone transverse rectus abdominis myocutaneous (TRAM) flap reconstructions were compared with Canadians.
Women benefited from having breast reconstruction, but this improvement was not dependent upon country of origin. Swedish women reported less improvement in one subscale, that of general health, compared with American women (P=0.01). There were no cultural differences detected between Americans and Canadians.
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Published online: February 09, 2007
Accepted: October 19, 2005
Received: May 18, 2005
☆Work presented at the 12th Congress of The European Society of Surgical Oncology, Lille, France, April 2002.
© 2007 British Association of Plastic, Reconstructive and Aesthetic Surgeons. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.