Psychological concerns of Indian women with breast cancer

About the project

Project title: A systematic review and critical interpretative synthesis of the psychological concerns of Indian women with breast cancer living in different national contexts: the importance of culturally congruent care
Time frame: Completed
Contact for more details: Dr Sunitha Daniel PhD student,(

The purpose of this research is to improve understanding of psychological symptoms of Indian women with breast cancer.

Breast cancer is becoming the most common cancer among women of Indian origin. Little is known about the psychological impact of the disease and its treatment among this population. 

Critical interpretative synthesis of 18 studies from Canada or India found similar psychological concerns to “Western” women, but were framed by the common culture of Indian women in either country. Family structure, religion and community appears to protect against and cause distress in relation to the expected core roles of wife and mother, and male-dominance in decision-making. Stigma was amplified by poor knowledge about the nature of cancer. Migrant Indian women had additional problems due to language barriers. Culturally congruent care including accessible communication and information may help prevent and alleviate distressing symptoms whether in India or as part of a migrant community.


Daniel S, Clark J, Gnanapragasam S, et alPsychological concerns of Indian women with breast cancer in different national contexts: a systematic review and mixed-methods synthesisBMJ Supportive & Palliative Care Published Online First: 11 May 2020. doi: 10.1136/bmjspcare-2019-002076