Negative and positive life changes following treatment completion: Chinese breast cancer survivors’ perspectives

Huilin Cheng, Janet W.H. Sit, Karis K.F. Cheng

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

14 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose: Although we acknowledge the negative and positive aspects of the cancer survivorship experience, we have little information on this issue from the perspective of Chinese breast cancer survivors. This study aimed to explore the perceptions of negative and positive life changes following treatment completion among this population. Methods: Using purposive sampling, 29 breast cancer survivors were selected from the attendees of a local cancer self-help organization in middle China and proceeded with semi-structured in-depth interviews. Each interview was transcribed verbatim and analyzed using directed content analysis. Results: Two predetermined categories were identified to represent participant perception of the breast cancer survivorship experience, namely, negative life changes and positive life changes. The first category included fear of recurrence, symptom experience, poor body image, altered sexuality and intimacy, and financial burden. The second category consisted of new life perspective, personal growth, and enhanced relationships with family. Conclusions: Our findings contribute to the emerging evidence on the duality of breast cancer survivorship. This enhanced understanding of the specific negative and positive changes experienced by Chinese breast cancer survivors can assist health professionals in addressing survivorship issues by designing appropriate interventions to minimize negative consequences and enhance positive growth.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)791-798
Number of pages8
JournalSupportive Care in Cancer
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Feb 2016


  • Breast cancer
  • Chinese
  • Qualitative research
  • Survivorship

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology


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