When the treatment stops: A qualitative study of life post breast cancer treatment

Narelle Powers, Judith Gullifer, Rhonda Shaw

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22 Citations (Scopus)


Public attention focuses on breast cancer treatment and fundraising; however, there is limited discussion about life post-treatment. Once treatment is complete, there can be societal expectations of newfound wellness. To understand this phenomenon, the narratives of nine women post-treatment were explored. Analysis revealed the adoption of the sick role by the participants, the vulnerability experienced with the cessation of treatment, the disturbance of moving on from the security of the medical system and the patient and doctor relationship. Findings emphasised that survivorship can remain challenging and can present adverse psychosocial implications for women and those close to them.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1371-1382
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Health Psychology
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2016
Externally publishedYes


  • breast cancer
  • disturbance
  • liminality
  • qualitative
  • vulnerability

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