UBC Faculty Research and Publications

Factors Associated with “Survivor Identity” in Men with Breast Cancer Dalton, Kathryn L.; Garland, Sheila N.; Miller, Peggy; Miller, Bret; Ambrose, Cheri; Wassersug, Richard J. (Richard Joel), 1946-


Cancer patients vary in their comfort with the label “survivor”. Here, we explore how comfortable males with breast cancer (BC) are about accepting the label cancer “survivor”. Separate univariate logistic regressions were performed to assess whether time since diagnosis, age, treatment status, and cancer stage were associated with comfort with the “survivor” label. Of the 70 males treated for BC who participated in the study, 58% moderately-to-strongly liked the term “survivor”, 26% were neutral, and 16% moderately-to-strongly disliked the term. Of the factors we explored, only a longer time since diagnosis was significantly associated with the men endorsing a survivor identity (OR = 1.02, p = 0.05). We discuss how our findings compare with literature reports on the comfort with the label “survivor” for women with BC and men with prostate cancer. Unlike males with prostate cancer, males with BC identify as “survivors” in line with women with BC. This suggests that survivor identity is more influenced by disease type and treatments received than with sex/gender identities.

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