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Demographic and Clinical Correlates of Breast Cancer Patients with Depression

Author(s): Ahmed Rady, Osama Elkholy, Heba Abouelwafa, Adel Elsheshai, Saed Elnoium, Ahmed Mohammed

Background and objectives

Breast cancer patients are vulnerable to depression with prevalence varying between 11 and 86% in literature with direct and indirect impact on compliance to treatment, quality of life and response to therapeutic course. Our study aims to identifying the profile of patients with cancer breast whom symptoms exceed normal reactive sadness to depressive manifestation necessitating psychiatric and psychological intervention.


100 female patients with breast cancer diagnosis were recruited from Alexandria Police Hospital after consenting they were subject to mammogram, laboratory investigations for calcium, alkaline phosphatase, renal, hepatic functions and complete blood picture and thyroid profile. Hamilton Rating Scale and structured demographic data questionnaire was to collect relevant data.


The prevalence of moderate to severe depressive symptoms on HAM-D was 52%, Significant statistical association was found between patients with depressive manifestations and postmenopusal state (p<0.001), with widowed and divorced (p<0.001), family history of brease cancer (p<0.001), advanced cancer staging (p<0.001), presence of Infiltrative ductal carcinoma (p<0.001) and type of surgery whether lumbectomy or modifies radical mastectomy (p<0.05). However the presence of brain metastasis, adjuvant chemotherapy or presence of family history of psychiatric illness didn’t show statistical difference.


Depression is a common illness among breast cancer patients with particular vulnerable group among those postmenopausal widowed and divorced with advanced stage having rather infiltrative ductal carcinoma.

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