Decision aids in North American breast cancer outpatients have been shown to assist with treatment decision making and reduce decisional conflict. To date, appropriate delivery formats to effectively increase patient participation in newly diagnosed breast cancer inpatients have not been investigated in the context of German health care provision. The impact of a decision aid intervention was studied in patients (n=111) with a strong suspicion of breast cancer in a randomised controlled trial. The primary outcome variable was decisional conflict. Participants were followed up 1 week post-intervention with a retention rate of 92%. Analyses revealed that the intervention group felt better informed (eta(p)(2)=0.06) but did not experience an overall reduction in decisional conflict as compared with the control group. The intervention had no effect on uptake rates of treatment options, length of consultation with the surgeon, time point of treatment decision making, perceived involvement in decision making, neither decision related nor general patient satisfaction. Patients who received the decision aid intervention experienced a small benefit with regards to how informed they felt about advantages and disadvantages of relevant treatment options. Results are discussed in terms of contextual factors and individual differences as moderators of treatment decision aid effectiveness.