International Journal of Cancer, Clinical Inventions and Experimental Oncology (IJCCEO)

EA Journals

How Women Construct Their Identities as Breast Cancer Survivors


Breast cancer is a life-threatening disease that has a pervasive nature of uncertainty which can lead its victims to a feeling of segregated and disempowerment. These victims often reconstruct their identity of a new self, depending on their experience. The aim of this study is to find out how women construct their identities as breast cancer survivors. A qualitative phenomenological study design was used. Twenty-two BC survivors were selected purposively from Lagos University Teaching Hospital (LUTH) breast cancer clinic using a snowball sampling technique and data was collected using an unstructured one-on-one interview with an open-ended questions interview guide. The Data collected was analysed using structural analysis and in-depth interpretation of meaning. The findings revealed that the participants, each, had their construct about their identities concerning BC treatment outcome. Their responses demonstrated 3 categories of identity as the outcome, thus:  as the outcome: survivors, victims and uncertain group. These self-identification and interpretation of BrCa experience were found to be influenced by a cascade of factors cumulating as experiences through the 3 stages in the journey. The study concluded that despite the identification of the participants in this study as survivors by the researchers, the participants have their own constructed self-identity based on the outcome of their BrCa treatment. Therefore, the use of the word “survivor” to identify women who have suffered from BrCa and have undergone treatment, is a way of enlightening the women on the choice of Identification they can use they reflect successful treatment and a more emotionally supportive means to maintain a healthy new lifestyle for the rest of their life.

Citation: Ojewale, M. O., Nwozichi, C., Maitanmi, J.O., Maitanmi, B.T., Gaknung, B.K. (2023) How Women Construct Their Identities as Breast Cancer Survivors, International Journal of Cancer, Clinical Inventions and Experimental Oncology, Vol.4, No.1, pp.1-16


Keywords: Breast cancer, Construct, Identity, survivorship

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This work by European American Journals is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 4.0 Unported License


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