Sexual health care for cancer patients

Johannes Bitzer (CH)

[Bitzer] University Hospital Basel

Introduction: Breast and genital cancer are life threatening diseases changing radically the whole life situation of the affected women. Due to progress in early detection and treatment more and more women survive and have to live with the disease and longterm treatment Accompanying these women through the different phases of the disease and treatment process is the task of psychooncology including the care for sexual health. At the center of sexual medicine of the University of Basel we have developped a model of sexual health care for cancer patients based on the biopsychosocial model of human sexuality with a structured approach Results: The care process is characterized by several steps: Addressing the issue of sexual health in the context of the disease. Establishing a comprehensive explanatory diagnosis including the disease and treatment related contributing factors,; Developping a treatment plan together with the patient and the partner based on treatment objectives defined by the patient (couple) and including problem oriented medical ( phaarmacological treatment including hormonal treatment) and psychosocial interventions. (individual and couples therapy). The aim is reconstruct sexual life in the new context of life Conclusion: There is a need for sexual health care for cancer patients which can be met by a structured biopsychosocial approach