Article Text

Download PDFPDF
1223 Body image dissatisfaction among women treated for cervical cancer
  1. Nadia Bouzid,
  2. Haifa Haj Abdallah,
  3. Sabrine Tebessi,
  4. Souha Messoudi,
  5. Rym Zanzouri and
  6. Sameh Tebra
  1. Radiation Oncology Department, Farhat Hached Hospital, Sousse, Tunisia


Introduction/Background Women surviving cervical cancer (CC) grapple with long-term consequences. Despite subtle physical alterations, the profound impact on both imagination and sensation persists. Our study aims to explore the impact of CC and its treatments on the body image (BI) of patients within our care.

Methodology Through a descriptive cross-sectional study, we present 30 cases of CC treated by radiotherapy at Farhat Hached university hospital’s radiotherapy department in Sousse, Tunisia, between 2006 and 2020. An assessment of BI was conducted using a standardized psychometric scale: Body Esteem Scale for Adolescents and Adults (BESAA).

Results Cervical cancer was predominantly diagnosed at an advanced stage (56.7% stage IIB). Twenty-nine percent of patients (96.6%) underwent external radiotherapy. Conformal 3D technique was employed in 75.9% of cases. The mean dose of external radiotherapy was 51.8 ± 9.2 Gy, delivered in conventional fractionation. Seventy-three percent of patients underwent brachytherapy, primarily uterovaginal at low-dose rate in 86.4% of cases. Approximately 87% of patients experienced local radio-induced complications, and 65.5% exhibited medium to long-term systemic complications. Disturbed BESAA was noted in 66.7% of patients.

In univariate analysis, vaginal ulceration, pre- and post-diagnostic marital discord, negative spouse reaction to CC diagnosis, lack of communication and support from the spouse during follow-up, poor sexual relationship before or after diagnosis, patients‘ beliefs regarding cervical cancer and sexual intercourse, and absence of information provided to the spouse about the nature of the disease significantly increased the prevalence of BI disturbances. In multivariate analysis, pre-diagnostic marital discord emerged as an independent exacerbating factor for BI disturbances.

Conclusion Findings indicate that cervical cancer and its treatments can significantly impact the quality of life of women, particularly affecting their BI. Understanding and addressing this dimension are crucial for comprehensive care, aiming to enhance self-perception.

Disclosures No.

Statistics from

Request Permissions

If you wish to reuse any or all of this article please use the link below which will take you to the Copyright Clearance Center’s RightsLink service. You will be able to get a quick price and instant permission to reuse the content in many different ways.