A128: Psychosocial barriers to breast and cervical cancers prevention in Northern Nigeria
1Cardiff Metropolitan University, Cardiff, UK
Breast and cervical cancers are major causes of female cancer deaths. Prevention, early detection and treatment increase survival rates. Various demographic, economic and sociocultural factors influence knowledge, attitude and practice of preventive methods in developing countries. This study aims to explore the level of awareness, perception and attitude towards breast and cervical cancers in Kaduna, a state in Northern Nigeria.
A cross sectional study was conducted using self-administered questionnaires to assess the level of knowledge on breast and cervical cancers' risk factors, attitude, and practice of prevention and treatment options among 200 adult women, visiting a National eye centre in Kaduna state. Purposive non-random sampling was adopted. Chi-square test was employed to test for association between knowledge, attitude and practice with certain demographic variables. Findings were represented as frequencies and percentages.
Higher proportions of the respondents (53.6%) have good knowledge on breast cancer signs, symptoms and preventive options, compared to that of cervical cancer (33.3%). However, the poor practice of preventive options in the sample appears to be similar (62.1%; 61.9%) for breast and cervical cancers respectively. Common barriers to screening are lack of interest, and absence of cancer symptoms, and lack of screening services. Women reported intentions of screening provided their families and spouses were supportive.
Programmes that meet the sociocultural needs of women are required to improve cancer health behaviours, in order to lower the morbidity and mortality rates. The themes generated from this study would be used to inform the design and content of the secondary qualitative interviews, aimed at describing and further studying the significant factors identified. The overall impact of this research is to provide insight to cancer management in Kaduna state, and similar populations.
Key words: Breast cancer, cervical cancer, knowledge, attitude, health behaviour, sociocultural