Responding to scars after breast surgery

J. Slatman, A. Halsema, A.M. Meershoek

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Abstract

This article represents a phenomenological study on how women endow meaning to their scarred bodies after breast cancer treatment. Data collection consisted of multiple interviews with 10 women who had mastectomy, and 9 women who had breast-saving surgery. Against the background of the phenomenological premise that one's body can appear to oneself in various ways, we identified meaningful differences between experiences that go together with one's body at a distance and experiences that go together with one's body's closeness. The diversity in body experiences we have revealed in our study calls for reconsidering the prejudiced critique of the body as object in mainstream phenomenology of health care, and invites medical professionals to develop the ability to recognize different perspectives on embodiment.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1614–1626
Number of pages13
JournalQualitative Health Research
Volume26
Issue number12
Early online date15 Jun 2015
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2016

Keywords

  • cancer
  • breast
  • surgery
  • scars
  • embodiment
  • bodily experience
  • phenomenology
  • research
  • qualitative
  • interviews
  • semistructured
  • The Netherlands
  • CONSERVING SURGERY
  • CANCER SURGERY
  • BODY-IMAGE
  • EXPERIENCE
  • PHENOMENOLOGY
  • MASTECTOMY
  • RECONSTRUCTION
  • INTIMACY
  • PAIN

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