Medliorate

Improving medical students

Stress and Breast Biopsies

Posted by medliorator on March 15, 2009

Purpose: To determine whether uncertainty of the diagnosis after large-core breast biopsy (LCBB) adversely affects biochemical stress levels.

Results: Women learned their diagnosis on days 1–6 (mean, day 2.4) after LCBB

Conclusion: Uncertainty about the final diagnosis after LCBB is associated with substantial biochemical distress, which may have adverse effects on immune defense and wound healing. Results indicate the need for more rapid communication of biopsy results.

Large-Core Breast Biopsy: Abnormal Salivary Cortisol Profiles Associated with Uncertainty of Diagnosis [Radiology]

The science of the paper isn’t great and the conclusions made regarding wound healing with mildly elevated cortisol levels is conjectural at best, but papers like this don’t have to be great science. The point is that women experience a tremendous amount of emotional stress while waiting for breast biopsy results and we as physicians ought to do everything we can to get those results to them as soon as possible. For core or needle biospies, it ought not to take more than 24-48 hours. For lumpectomies or axillary dissections however, it could very well take several days but no woman should be waiting more than a week.

Waiting and Stress and Breast Biopsies [Buckeye Surgeon]

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