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The Patty Brisben Foundation takes care to follow the progress of all ongoing research we’ve helped fund. For questions about our role in this study, or any other research, please contact us and we’ll do what we can to assist you.

Documenting and Understanding the Impact of Breast Cancer on Women’s Sexual Health and Function

We’ve collaborated with this center on a groundbreaking research study, the largest to date, that documents breast cancer survivors’ sexual difficulties and assesses survivors’ interest in sexual enhancement products as a means to improving their sexual function.

This study was accepted for publication in a top peer-reviewed scientific journal, Cancer Nursing, which is read by the women and men who most commonly interact with and support breast cancer patients. It was published in Fall 2008.

This study was important for several reasons:

  • It is one of the few papers to focus exclusively on women who received a breast cancer diagnosis prior to age 50, and who often have unique sexuality and fertility concerns, particularly if they are experiencing complications related to treatment such as premature or surgically induced menopause
  • These young survivors had significantly lower sexual functioning scores across most domains (e.g., sexual arousal, desire, satisfaction, orgasm)
  • More than 95% of the survivors studied indicated that cancer had adversely affected their sexuality
  • Those who were currently in active treatment were experiencing frequent problems related to pain
  • 61% of the women in treatment were experiencing vaginal dryness