The results of an online questionnaire of 609 breast cancer survivors in the U.S. suggest that nearly half of patients experienced delays in care during the early weeks of the COVID-19 pandemic. The study, by researchers at the University of Illinois Chicago, is published in the journal Breast Cancer Research and Treatment.
The researchers found that 44% of the respondents reported a delay in care. The most commonly reported delay was for routine follow-up visits. Respondents reported the highest rate of delays in routine follow-up appointments (79%), breast reconstruction surgery (66%), diagnostic imaging (60%) and lab testing (50%). Approximately 30% of respondents reported delays in hospital- or clinic-based cancer therapies, including radiation (30%), infusion therapies (32%) and surgical tumor removal (26%).