Exploring differences in psychological aspects during pregnancy between cancer survivors and women without a history of cancer: Supportive Care in Cancer

E. Mascheroni, F. Faccio, L. Bonassi, C. Ionio, F.A. Peccatori, C. Pisoni, C. Cassani, G. Ongaro, E. Cattaneo, G. Nastasi, G. Pravettoni

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Young cancer survivors often wish to bear a child after oncological treatments, as they might not have started or completed their families. As young cancer survivors have a higher risk of developing psychological difficulties, this study investigated whether there were significant differences in psychological aspects between pregnant women who received a cancer diagnosis in the past and pregnant women without a history of cancer. A total of 123 pregnant women, of which 36 were cancer survivors and 87 women without a history of cancer, were recruited during their last trimester at different hospitals in Northern Italy. Patients were asked to complete a socio-demographic profile and questionnaires measuring mood states, post-traumatic symptoms, centrality of the pregnancy and cancer event, quality of life, and prenatal attachment. Cancer survivors had significantly higher levels of PTSD symptoms, perceived pregnancy as more central to their identity and life story, perceived lower quality of life and had lower intensity of prenatal attachment compared with the control group. Centrality of the cancer event did not correlate with any psychological variables. Preliminary results suggest that a past cancer diagnosis can influence the mother’s psychological functioning and the development of the relationship with their child. © 2019, Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2255-2263
Number of pages9
JournalSupportive Care Cancer
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 2020


  • Cancer diagnosis
  • Cancer survivors
  • Motherhood
  • Pregnancy
  • adult
  • Article
  • assessment of humans
  • breast cancer
  • cancer diagnosis
  • cancer survivor
  • Centrality of Events Scale
  • demography
  • divorced person
  • family income
  • female
  • female genital tract cancer
  • high school
  • Hodgkin disease
  • human
  • Impact of Events Scale
  • Italy
  • major clinical study
  • married person
  • maternal age
  • medical history
  • melanoma
  • mood
  • parity
  • posttraumatic stress disorder
  • pregnancy
  • pregnant woman
  • Prenatal Attachment Inventory
  • prenatal care
  • primipara
  • priority journal
  • Profile of Mood States
  • psychological aspect
  • quality of life
  • questionnaire
  • separated person
  • single (marital status)
  • spontaneous abortion
  • case control study
  • coping behavior
  • family health
  • genetics
  • neoplasm
  • pregnancy complication
  • psychology
  • Adaptation, Psychological
  • Adult
  • Cancer Survivors
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Family Health
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Neoplasms
  • Pregnancy Complications, Neoplastic
  • Quality of Life
  • Surveys and Questionnaires


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