Perceived barriers to adherence to breast cancer-related lymphoedema self-management

Jessica Alcorso*, Kerry A. Sherman, Louise Koelmeyer, Helen Mackie, John Boyages

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    6 Citations (Scopus)


    Background: Self-management is critical for the effective maintenance of breast-cancer related lymphoedema (BCRL), but levels of adherence are suboptimal. Aims: To compare the perceptions of lymphoedema therapists with those of women affected with BCRL regarding barriers to self-management. Methods: One-hundred-and-sixty-two women with breast cancer-related lymphoedema and 98 lymphoedema therapists were recruited. Participants completed an online survey assessing perceived barriers to adherence to lymphoedema self-management. Results: Multivariate analysis of variance indicated a significant difference between the extent to which therapists and affected women agreed that each of the seven perceived barriers negatively impact adherence. For each perceived barrier, therapists were more likely to agree that it negatively impacts adherence, while affected women were more likely to disagree that it negatively impacts adherence. Conclusion: The results suggest a need for improvements in communication between patients and care providers.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)20-26
    Number of pages7
    JournalJournal of Lymphoedema
    Issue number1
    Publication statusPublished - 2016


    • lymphoedema
    • patient adherence
    • self-management
    • Self-management
    • breast cancer


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