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Exploring the mental health challenges and sources of mental health support for women with breast cancer in Vietnam: A qualitative study
Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Epidemiology and Global Health.
2019 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (One Year)), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

Introduction: Breast cancer is the most frequently diagnosed cancer among Vietnamese women in recent years and is predicted to increase in the number of new cases for the following period. In parallel with the cancer therapy, mental health challenges and sources of mental health support for patients with breast cancer are important issues which require to be considered carefully. However, the literature review shows that none of the previous studies has been found on this public health topic in the Vietnam setting. Therefore, this study aimed to explore the mental health challenges of women with breast cancer in Vietnam, the root causes of these challenges, and to explore sources of mental health support that they received.

Methods: Semi-structured in-depth interviews were conducted with thirteen women with breast cancer and four caregivers from both the North and South of Vietnam, using the purposive sampling technique. Collected data were analyzed by qualitative content analysis, using the Open Code Software version 4.02. Categories and sub-categories have emerged from data during the analysis process.

Results: Mental health challenges that women diagnosed with breast cancer reported were adverse individual emotional and psychological reactions after diagnosis, profound concerns about problems related to family, concerns about treatment, negative thoughts during breast cancer life, psychological effects due to disease symptoms and treatment side effects, psychological pressure in terms of partner relationships and psychological pressure due to social stigma and discrimination. During breast cancer life, women received mental health supports from their family, the supportive network of the cancer-patients club, peers-cancer patients in the hospital, medical staff and religious or spiritual institution/person.

Conclusion: Since the time being diagnosed with breast cancer, women were confronted with various mental health issues. Family, peers-cancer patients and the supportive network of cancer-patients clubs are three main sources of mental health support for women, which play crucial roles in assisting them to overcome their mental health challenges during those difficult periods of time. The role of health care providers in supporting mental health for women with breast cancer has not been clearly explored in this study. Further public health research and appropriate health interventions should be conducted to deal with this problem.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2019. , p. 54
Series
Centre for Public Health Report Series, ISSN 1651-341X ; 2019:6
Keywords [en]
breast cancer, mental health, psychology, emotion, stigma, discrimination, mental health supports, Vietnamese women, qualitative study, qualitative content analysis.
National Category
Public Health, Global Health, Social Medicine and Epidemiology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-165631OAI: oai:DiVA.org:umu-165631DiVA, id: diva2:1374648
External cooperation
Queen's University Belfast (Northern Irland) - Chris; Hanoi University of Public Health (Vietnam) - Ngan
Educational program
Master's Programme in Public Health (one-year)
Presentation
2018-05-23, Room A110, Caring Sciences Building, Umeå University, Umeå, 14:00 (English)
Supervisors
Examiners
Available from: 2019-12-02 Created: 2019-12-02 Last updated: 2019-12-02Bibliographically approved

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Nguyen, Ngoc Bao
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CiteExportLink to record
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Citation style
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