UBC Theses and Dissertations
A comparison of body image among healthy women, women who have undergone mastectomy and women who have undergone lumpectomy Halfdanardottir, Svandis Iris
The purpose of this descriptive comparative study was to describe and compare the body image perception of women who have undergone mastectomy, of women who have undergone lumpectomy, and of healthy women. The conceptual framework for the study was based on Brown's Model of Body Image (1977). A convenience sample of 63 women was used, of which 22 women had undergone mastectomy, 18 women had undergone lumpectomy, and 23 women were healthy. The healthy group was significantly younger than the surgical groups. The majority of women who had undergone breast cancer surgery was one to four years post-surgery. The women completed the edited version of Berscheid's et al. (1973) Body Image Scale (24 items), five questions which specifically related to breasts, and a demographic information sheet. Three additional questions were included, which pertained only to the surgical groups. The questionnaires to the women were mailed. Overall, the women had a positive perception of their body image. The majority of women both in the healthy group and in the mastectomy group presented the medium to high level of body image satisfaction, but half of women in the lumpectomy group perceived the medium level of body image satisfaction, and one third perceived the low level of body image satisfaction. For most women, breast satisfaction was in the medium to high level of satisfaction. The findings indicated that no significant difference was found between body image perceptions of women who had undergone mastectomy, women who had undergone lumpectomy and healthy women. Furthermore, the majority of women in the surgical groups perceived the impact of surgery to be little or none and was satisfied with the scar from the surgery. The findings of this study were discussed in relation to the conceptual framework, other research studies, and methodological problems inherent to the study. Implications for nursing practice and recommendations for future research were identified.
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