Breast Cancer during the Childbearing Years
Originally Published In
Journal of Childbirth Education
Women in the prime of their childbearing years are at risk for breast cancer. Three percent of all breast cancer occurs in women under the age of 40. A missed diagnosis of breast cancer is one of the most frequent causes of malpractice claims in the United States. Treatment options during pregnancy are based on the type of breast cancer, clinical staging and pathology, the physicians, and the mother. The effects of cancer treatment can potentially affect fertility and breastfeeding. The cost of copays and incidental expenses can burden families for life. Diagnosis can affect communication, intimacy, and sexual relationships. The childbirth educator needs to know their local fertility, oncology, and social support systems.