‘Breast cancer burden puts strain on families’

By Lim Jeong-yeo
  • Published : Nov 6, 2017 - 13:09
  • Updated : Nov 6, 2017 - 13:09
More than 1 in 7 breast cancer patients go through separation or divorce, research results indicated Monday.

The research, carried out by Daelim St. Mary’s Hospital in Seoul, showed that among 358 breast cancer patients surveyed, more than 30 percent felt let down by their family in the fight against cancer. 

Examination for breast cancer (Yonhap)

Of the respondents, 119 said they felt that there was not enough emotional or material support from their families during their struggle against cancer. Dissatisfaction toward in-laws was the highest, at 22 percent, while it was the lowest for spouses and children, at 9.8 percent.

About 15 percent said they had gone through separation or divorce. Compared to the average divorce rate among Korean women in 2016, which stood at 4.8 percent, breast cancer patients were more than three times more likely to divorce.

Experts from the field of medicine cited the major trigger for divorce for patients in the age groups of 40s to 60s could be the extra burden of childrearing and homemaking even after being diagnosed with cancer.

By Lim Jeong-yeo (