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Impact of cosmetic care on quality of life in breast cancer patients during chemotherapy and radiotherapy: an initial randomized controlled study


*Corresponding author, Department of Dermatology, Notre Dame de Grâce Clinic, Gosselies, 212, chaussée de Nivelles, B−6041 Gosselies, Belgium, tel. +32 71 379 654; fax +32 71 379 623; E-mail:


Background  Breast cancer is the most common cancer in women and therefore represents a major problem in public health. Data from patients’ self-report questionnaires provide valuable information about the side-effects that patients may view as having a significantly detrimental impact on their quality of life (QOL) and yet are not always recognized as important by healthcare professionals. Cosmetology is a specific care for patients and there is actually no scientific evidence regarding effects on QOL for women with breast cancer.

Objective  The purpose of this study is to assess the impact of cosmetic care on QOL in breast cancer patients during chemotherapy and radiotherapy.

Methods  We developed a prospective, multicentre, randomized, controlled study including 27 patients. All the patients had to fill in a French-validated dermatologic specific quality-of-life questionnaire to compare the QOL of the two groups, the cosmetic group and the control group, at three different times of the adjuvant treatment.

Results  The results show a statistically significant difference between the cosmetic group and the control group in two areas of QOL: mood state and self-perception of the disease.

Conclusion  This study emphasizes the interest of cosmetic care in breast cancer patients. However, further larger trials are needed to confirm this study.

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