Healthcare providers > Sexual health toolkit

Sexual health toolkit

Healthcare providers > Sexual health toolkit

A Black man and woman sit on a couch, laughing togetherA young white woman with medium-length brown hair looks at herself in a mirror as she adjusts a white lacy bra over her chest, which has a large floral tattoo.

Connecting healthcare providers with resources about breast cancer and sexual health, questions, and concerns


Despite this, Living Beyond Breast Cancer’s 2020 National Needs Assessment of Young Women Affected by Breast Cancer found that most young women in treatment report that they never discussed sexual side effects with their medical team. There are many reasons patients may be reluctant to bring up the topic of sex, and in more than two-thirds of cases where there was a discussion of sexual side effects, a healthcare provider was the one to open that discussion.

LBBC is committed to helping young people navigate the complex ways in which breast cancer impacts their lives and to providing healthcare providers the education and resources to address their patients’ unmet needs. On this page you will find a collection of resources to help you speak to patients about sexual health and address some of the most common questions and concerns they may face. You’ll also find resources to share with your patients.



Resources for healthcare providers

A Black man and woman sit on a couch, laughing together

📥 Download - Start the conversation: Discussing sexual health with breast cancer patients

Despite the impact that breast cancer treatment can have on sexual health, most young women report that they never discussed the topic during their care. This downloadable tip sheet provides straightforward recommendations you can share with your patients to help them find relief for a problem that can feel hopeless.

Download now

🎥 Webinar - Let’s talk about sex and breast cancer: Navigating tough conversations with your patients

Starting a conversation about sex can be a challenge both for patients and providers. Breast surgeon and OB-GYN Heather Macdonald, MD, FACOG, and licensed sex therapist Stephanie Buehler, MPW, PsyD, CST-S, IF, discuss ways to introduce the topic that minimizes awkwardness. They also provide information and resources to help you feel prepared for the conversation and questions that may follow. Slides are also available.

This is a previously recorded webinar. CEs are no longer available.

Length: 1 hour and 15 minutes


Watch now
A young woman looks up curiously at the sky

📄 Needs assessment identifies six key gaps in care of young women diagnosed with breast cancer

Serving the needs of young women requires understanding what those needs are and which ones are not being met. Learn what young women said about sexual health and five other key needs that aren’t being met in care, from the National Needs Assessment of Young Women Affected by Breast Cancer. Download the full executive summary

Learn more

⏯ Video - Young women’s stories & tips for providers: Sexual health and breast cancer

Women from our series on sexual health effects share what they wish they heard from healthcare providers to help them prepare for and deal with these issues.

Length: Under 5 minutes

Watch now

Resources for your patients

LBBC links

Sexual side effects of breast cancer

Our page for patients covers the various ways breast cancer treatment can affect sexual health, along with practical information on finding help and support for women who are dealing with these effects.

LGBTQ+: Body image, sexuality, and family planning
Information tailored for LGBTQ+ people on the challenges of dealing with sexual health effects and related issues including body image and fertility.

Downloadable resources

Guide to understanding sex and intimacy

A downloadable guide for patients that features in-depth information on the ways breast cancer can affect your sexual desire and response. The guide shares practical tips for talking about sexual effects with healthcare providers and sexual partners as well as simple ways to improve sexual health and resume sexual activity. Please note: This guide is not available in print.

Speaking to your doctor about sex

This one-page downloadable fact sheet shares simple and direct ways for patients to approach conversations about sexual side effects with healthcare providers. It includes prompts and space to write down important points they want to discuss at appointments.

Speaking to your partner about sex & intimacy

Suggestions for patients who are having trouble speaking to their partners about sexual side effects and finding ways to move forward that are pleasurable for both of them. This downloadable worksheet includes prompts to discuss the medical causes of sexual side effects and begin discussion about what is or isn’t pleasurable for the person in treatment.



This project is supported by the Grant or Cooperative Agreement Number 1 NU58DP006672, funded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Its contents are solely the responsibility of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official views of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention or the Department of Health and Human Services.