Knowledge on breast cancer risk factors: comparison between survivors and healthy women aged 40–60

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Ewa Mędrela-Kuder

2 (47) 2016 s. 142–147
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Fraza do cytowania: Mędrela-Kuder E. Knowledge on breast cancer risk factors: comparison between survivors and healthy women aged 40–60. Polski Przegląd Nauk o Zdrowiu. 2016;2(47):142–147.

Introduction. As the most frequent female cancer type in Poland, breast cancer comes first in terms of incidence. Poland numbers among countries of medium incidence and mortality of this disease. In 2010, 15 784 cases of breast cancer were recorded, which accounted for 22.4% of the total count of incident tumours. The majority of females do realise the possibility of developing cancer, but are unaware of the associated risk factors. The identification and avoidance of modifiable risk factors presents a viable approach to the reduction of the incidence of breast cancer. Material. The study was conducted in 2014 in Małopolska Province among a total of one hundred randomly selected females. The group included fifty healthy participants and fifty breast cancer survivors, all aged between forty and sixty. Methods. A self-designed questionnaire was employed, consisting of thirty questions which dealt with demographic and social data as well as knowledge on breast cancer risk factors and information sources. Results. Most of the breast cancer survivors correctly indicated the risk factors of the disease (oral contraceptives, childlessness or first pregnancy after age 34, late menopause, early menarche, hormonal imbalance), as opposed to the healthy females (statistically significant). The vast majority of both groups (86% survivors, 92% healthy) knew that BRCA mutation carriage increases the chances of developing cancer. Conclusions. Compared to the healthy respondents, breast cancer survivors possess a higher level of knowledge on the risk factors of this malignant tumour. Educational measures aimed at females of various age groups should be undertaken, concerning the risk factors of the tumours most common in a given population.

Key words: breast cancer, knowledge level.

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