Fluorescent tattoos may improve self-esteem in patients receiving radiotherapy for breast cancer
the ONA take:
According to new findings presented at the National Cancer Research Institute (NCRI) Cancer Conference in Liverpool, United Kingdom, invisible tattoos may be a more preferable option than the dark ink tattoos used to mark where a patient with breast cancer should receive radiotherapy during each session.
For the study, researchers at The Royal Marsden hospital in London, United Kingdom, surveyed 42 patients with breast cancer who were receiving radiotherapy how they felt about their body prior to therapy and 1 month afterwards. Half of patients received the dark ink tattoos and half received the invisible fluorescent tattoos that are only visible under ultraviolet light.
Results showed that 56% of women who received invisible tattoos had higher body confidence and self-esteem after radiotherapy versus 14% of patients who received dark ink tattoos. In addition, there was no difference in accuracy of treatment between each method, but treatment for patients with fluorescent tattoos took slightly longer.
The findings suggest that fluorescent tattoos should be offered as an alternative to dark ink tattoos to patients who might have negative attitudes toward their bodies following treatment. Because patients are surviving longer, it is important to lessen the long-term impact caused by treatment on patients.
Invisible tattoos preferable option to mark where a patient with breast cancer should receive radiotherapy.
Invisible tattoos could replace the permanent dark ink tattoos used to ensure that breast cancer patients having radiotherapy are treated in exactly the same spot during each session, according to results from a pilot study to be presented at the National Cancer Research Institute (NCRI) Cancer Conference. Research suggests that the permanent pin prick marks made on the skin of women having radiotherapy reminds them of their diagnosis for years to come, reducing body confidence and self-esteem.
It's also more difficult to spot these tattoos in dark-skinned women, potentially leading to inconsistencies in the area being treated. The NIHR-funded researchers, based at The Royal Marsden hospital in London, asked 42 breast cancer patients undergoing radiotherapy to rate how they felt about their body, before the treatment and one month later. Half the women were offered fluorescent tattoos, only visible under UV light, while the other half had conventional dark ink tattoos.
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