Background: Early Breast cancer patients have better prognosis and survival with proper treatment sequence. The longer the survival, more important gets the issue of sexual habits. Husbands are the primary caregivers and their attitude with interplay of relationship with wives holds the key to treatment.
Aim: To see the attitude and reaction of husbands towards their wives having undergone mastectomy for early breast cancer
Methods: 24 premenopausal mastectomized patients followed by adjuvant therapy for early breast cancer were selected for the study. All were triple negative and median age ranged from 33-40 years. The husbands were interviewed at the end of 1 year follow up using a predecided questionnaire.
Results: Acceptance for mastectomy amongst the husbands did not change on basis of education, religion and level of earning. 70% of the husbands said that they felt there was a change in body image of their wives after surgery but that did not create much of concern. Patients who were married for less than 10 years had sexual interaction 2-3 times a week. After a year 30% husbands reported having sex once a week. 50% Husbands said that they would like to resume sex atleast once a week but there were inhibitions and shyness from the end of their spouse. 20% husbands stated they would avoid sex in near future as mastectomy had a negative effect. 70% of the wives were coping with the disease through devotion and husband support while 30% were relying only on devotional support. 80% of the husbands accepted that chemotherapy was the most difficult phase.
Conclusions: Good counselling for both the members might improve bondage between husbands and wives and improve better adherence to treatment schedules in resource limited countries. Breast conservation surgery and implants may improve interactions.