Birkbeck, University of London

Psychological support for women with breast cancer

Every 10 minutes, a woman is diagnosed with breast cancer in the UK. Damage caused by breast cancer treatment to brain structures makes patients more vulnerable to anxiety, depression and post-traumatic stress symptoms. However, there is little psychological support for women recovering from treatment, as there is an assumption that once treatment is over, the patient is cured and ready to move on. 

Professor Nazanin Derakshan, from Birkbeck, University of London, set up the Building Resilience in Breast Cancer Centre, after she was diagnosed with the condition in her 30s, which helps thousands of women with breast cancer to build emotional resilience. Research from the centre shows that easy-to-use, online interventions, which exercise cognitive efficiency, can reduce symptoms of emotional vulnerability for up to 18 months.

 “Amazing group, great support from lovely ladies who have shared the experience and understand where you are coming from. Discussions really make you think, are very interesting and often cover subjects pertinent to all our situations.” Josephine, a BRiC member

Further Reading