Personal factors influencing breast cancer patients’ perception of breast conservation surgery in West China

Li Zhang, Jidong Gao, Dongcai Lin, Li Xie, Tianyu Wang, Liqun Zou


Background: Breast cancer patients’ understanding of therapies is a very important factor during their surgical treatment decision-making. To date, there has been no report in this area about Chinese patients. Aiming to evaluate the perception of breast conservation surgery (BCS) in Chinese breast cancer patients (CBCP) and explore influencing factors.
Methods: A self-structured questionnaire was distributed to 1,496 CBCPs, eliciting information on patients’ age, religion, sexual history, occupation, education, whether they were pre- or postoperative, understanding of BCS and their means of gaining information.
Results: A total of 1,324 (88.5%) patients completed the questionnaire. Only 2.42% of patients had more understanding of BCS. Patients’ perception about BCS was associated with their age, religion, occupation, education background and whether they were postoperative or not (P<0.01). Surgeon was the most commonly way being used to obtain information (68.9%); however, this was not significant in affecting patients’ perception [odds ratios (OR) =1.034; 95% confidence intervals (CI): 0.762–1.402]. Patients using books and/or internet to obtain information on BCS had better understanding (OR =1.665; 95% CI: 1.249–2.193), but only 20.2% patients used this way to search for information.
Conclusions: The study indicated that CBCP’ perception of BCS was poor, they lacked access to information. Therefore, educating patients and making them master knowledge about BCS were a hard work in China.