Clinical and sociodemographic factors that may influence the resilience of women surviving breast cancer: cross-sectional study

Purpose Breast cancer is one of the most common diseases, affecting many thousands of women. Although more than 80% of women survive the experience, very few studies have been conducted to examine the question of resilience among long-term survivors of breast cancer. The aim of this study is to describe the clinical and sociodemographic factors that correlate with greater resilience in women survivors of breast cancer, in the Costa del Sol Health Area (Spain). Methods Accordingly, a descriptive cross-sectional study was conducted, with respect to 59 survivors of breast cancer, who each completed a questionnaire for analysis according to the Connor-Davidson Resilience Scale (CD-RISC). Results The median resilience score was 77 (interquartile range 70–80). The group of patients who had survived for six or more years since the diagnosis had a higher score for total resilience (90: IR 76–92) than those diagnosed more recently (74: IR 65.7–83.7) (p = 0.012). Regarding the patients’ education background, the group with no formal qualifications or only primary studies had a score of 72 (IR 64–84), versus 79 (IR 74–89.7) for the group with higher levels of education (p = 0.016). Of the clinical variables, only the administration of chemotherapy was significantly associated with the score obtained on the CD-RISC scale (p = 0.012). Conclusions The results obtained in this study lead us to conclude that sociodemographic and clinical factors have a positive impact on the level of resilience among women resident in the Costa del Sol Health Area and who are long-term survivors of breast cancer.