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Trends in Cancer Research   Volumes    Volume 18 
Fear of breast cancer outweighs that of Covid-19: Breast cancer diagnosis during the pandemic
Mzingaye Sizibal, Austin Olano, Trevor Sexton, Thomas Joseph Barker III, Pamela Haan, Marianne Huebner, Jessica Henderson, Harvey Bumpers
Pages: 61 - 68
Number of pages: 8
Trends in Cancer Research
Volume 18 

Copyright © 2023 Research Trends. All rights reserved

The covid-19 pandemic caused an overwhelming burden on the healthcare system in the United States. There has been an overall decrease in breast cancer mortality; however, during the pandemic there was the potential for delays in diagnosis and treatment with a potential increase in mortality. This study proposes to address potential factors accounting for delays in patients seeking breast care for active symptoms or screen-detected abnormal breast imaging during the pandemic and how that might affect breast cancer staging at initial presentation. This study reviewed and compared demographics and timeliness of diagnosis for 156 newly diagnosed breast cancer patients, age 21-96 years old, seen in the pre-pandemic year (2019) with those seen during the pandemic (2020). The patients seen during the pandemic were surveyed by mail regarding factors that may have contributed to their attitudes about seeking treatment at that time. Questions included their fear of contracting the virus, concerns about safety of healthcare facilities, and fear of contracting and infecting loved ones upon returning home. The survey response rate was 71%. The majority (72%) of the women surveyed described feeling safe in our healthcare facility. No surgery for breast cancer was cancelled and adjuvant treatment was not curtailed. Patients stated that their fear of getting Covid-19 was not greater than their fear of breast cancer.
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