Body image and sexual problems
Your feelings about your body may change
after treatment for breast cancer. Managing body image issues may involve talking openly about your concerns with your partner and discussing your feelings with your doctor. Your doctor may be able to refer you to groups that can offer support and information.
Sexual problems can be caused by the physical or emotional effects of cancer or its treatment. Some women may feel less sexual pleasure or lose their desire to be intimate. For more information, see the topic Sexual Problems in Women.
After the initial treatment for
breast cancer, you may see your
radiation oncologist, or
surgeon at regularly scheduled intervals, depending on
your individual situation. Your checkups will happen less often as time goes by.
As part of your follow-up, you may have regular physical exams and mammograms.
It's also important to do
regular self-exams. That way, if the cancer does come back, you have a better chance of finding it early enough for successful treatment. Early signs
of recurrence may appear in the incision area itself, the opposite breast,
under your arm, or in the area above the collarbone.
problems develop, you may have additional tests, such as blood tests,
CT scans, or
If your breast cancer tested positive for estrogen and progesterone receptors, your doctor may prescribe medicines that can lower your risk of the cancer coming back. For more information, see Medications.
information about the treatment of metastatic or recurrent breast cancer, see
Breast Cancer, Metastatic or Recurrent.