BRCA positive kvinders beslutningstagen om tilvalg af profylaktisk mastektomi og salpingo-oophorektomi ud fra hendes livsbetingelser og frygt for cancer

Sascha Andersen

Studenteropgave: Speciale


Cancer is a big health issue in Denmark. In 2014, 35.532 Danes were diagnosed with cancer. This means that about one third of the Danish population will get the diagnosis a year. Breast cancer is the most frequent form of cancer in Denmark. Every year 4643 women will be told that they have breast cancer and every year 1158 will die from the disease. Ovarian cancer is not as frequent as breast cancer, but every year 553 women will be diagnosed and 376 will die and that makes it a very lethal disease. There may be several causes of breast and ovarian cancer and one of the is heredity. BRCA1 and BRCA2 are two tumorsuppressor genes which functions in DNA repair. An inherited mutation, from mother or farther, in these genes can cause an elevated lifetime risk of breast and ovarian cancer. If a woman gets tested and she has this mutation, then she has a choice. She can be checked regularly with MRI and mammography, for breast cancer and ultrasound and CA-125 biomarker for ovarian cancer. She can also choose to get prophylactic surgery of the breast and ovaries.
The aim of this thesis is to examine what reasons BRCA positive women have based their choice of prophylactic surgery on. To investigate this, I have conducted four interviews with four different women about their personal experiences and what they believe was the reason for the choice they had made.
The background and theory section are divided into two parts. Part I summarizes: cancer, breast cancer, ovarian cancer, statistics, BRCA and lifetime risk, technology and the operations. Part II summarizes what some of the newest research says about this topic, the used primary theory critical psychology and the secondary theory health psychology.
In the analysis is divided up into little section each with the keywords of what was the prominent issues for the interviewed women in this situation. Because, it was, more or less, the same for all women. It is analyzed with critical psychology as the primary theory and the concept, coping from health psychology as the secondary theory.
It is concluded that it was not biological knowledge or knowledge about cancer statistics and survival that made a difference. It was the personal experience with cancer and seeing loved one get sick and sometime die is the main reason, because it has developed a fear of cancer, in conjunction with the wish, that their own children should not experience the same. In the light of It is lifetime risk was a big issue and they wanted to minimize it as much as possible.

UddannelserMedicinalbiologi, (Bachelor/kandidatuddannelse) KandidatPsykologi, (Bachelor/kandidatuddannelse) Kandidat
Udgivelsesdato1 dec. 2017
Antal sider73
VejlederePeter Michael Vestlev & Mikka Nielsen


  • BRCA
  • Kritisk psykologi
  • cancer
  • brystkræft
  • ovariecancer