Original Study| Volume 23, ISSUE 1, P15-22, January 2023

Sexual Perception in Spanish Female Breast Cancer Survivors. Cross-Sectional Survey

Published:October 20, 2022DOI:


      • A low percentage of women resorted to or requested information and treatment from a pelvic physical therapist.
      • It seems that there is a negative correlation between the presence of pain during sexual intercourse and its effect on sexual life.
      • Surviving women of breast cancer have little knowledge about the role of physiotherapy in the conservative treatment of sexual dysfunction that can appear as a side effect of the treatments received.



      The aim was to assess sexual perception in female breast cancer survivors and establish if women presenting with sexual dysfunctions symptoms receive pelvic floor physiotherapy or request information on treatment.


      Cross-sectional survey carried out between January and March 2021. An online survey designed by the authors was structured in 3 dimensions: demographic and anthropometric data, medical data and sexual perception data. An open format survey with 23 questions available to any website visitor. The survey followed the CHERRIES guidelines. The study included 130 women who fulfilled the inclusion criteria.


      The presence of pain during sexual activity was reported in 56.92% of cases. Specifically, 40.8% reported superficial dyspareunia, which is most commonly expressed by women as a “stinging pain.” Surprisingly, only 4.6% of the women had received any type of pelvic floor physiotherapy treatment or had sought information.


      Women breast cancer survivors have a negative perception of their sexuality. In addition, there is a lack of knowledge about the role of physiotherapy in sexual dysfunction, and only a small percentage of women received pelvic floor treatment or information to address their sexual dysfunction.

      Graphical abstract


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