It's become more and more well known that even the most healthy women face sexual health issues more often than not. Now researchers have tried to see the correlation between sexual health issues and women with breast cancer.
Doctors conducted a survey at the memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center (MSKCC) in New York, which aimed to determine the relationship between women with breast cancer and their sexual health experiences. The study included more than 500 women with breast cancer in varying stages at the MSKCC Breast Cancer Center and local centers in the area. The majority of women had undergone or were undergoing chemotherapy, and over 25 percent of women were experiencing cancer that had spread beyond the breasts.
The majority of women reported having sexual problems - 76 percent. The majority of women said that the symptoms they faced with regards to sexual health were irritating in some way - these symptoms included low libido or vaginal dryness.
According to Dr. Shari B. Goldfarb of the MSKCC, this is a particularly important study because as breast cancer patients begin to live longer because of treatment and earlier detection, issues of well being and living the best life one can becomes more of a priority and concern. And I needn't stress the importance of sexual health and sexual satisfaction as a part of a balanced and healthy lifestyle.
While actual solutions were not included in the study, there are steps breast cancer patients can take to improve their sexual health - having safe and loving sexual partners, using lubricant, masturbating and getting in touch with one's personal sexual pleasure, taking possible medicines that are still being created for women to improve sexual dysfunction issues, and even going to counseling or therapy are just a few of the many things that may work for someone.
Of course, talking to people you trust, other breast cancer survivors, or your doctor, about these issues, may be a good way to build a support system around a topic that may be uncomfortable, but is so important!