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Knowledge regarding breast cancer and breast self-examination amongst urban females of North India: A cross-sectional study

 Department of Community Medicine, Dayanand Medical College and Hospital, Ludhiana, Punjab, India

Correspondence Address:
Priya Bansal,
Department of Community Medicine, Dayanand Medical College and Hospital, Old Campus, Civil Lines, Ludhiana, Punjab
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/JME.JME_115_22

Introduction: In this era of epidemiological transition where noncommunicable diseases are on a significant rise, cancer is a major public health problem globally. Out of all cancers, breast cancer is the most common female cancer worldwide. Aim: To determine the knowledge of breast cancer and its risk factors and breast self-examination (BSE) practice amongst urban women of North India. Patients and Methods: A cross-sectional study was carried out amongst 370 women aged between 20 and 60 years of age using pretested self-administered questionnaire. The collected information was entered into Microsoft Excel sheet and analysed using SPSS. Results: Mean age of the study participants was 40.3 ± 12.1 years and majority of the study participants (87%) were married. It was seen that the proportion of women who were aware increased as their literacy status increased, and this was statistically significant (P = 0.00). About 18.4% of the participants were aware regarding BSE. The most mentioned reason for not practicing BSE amongst those who were aware was that they considered themselves healthy (63.2%). Conclusions: In the current study, half of the women were aware of breast cancer and few were aware of BSE and very few were practicing BSE. It was seen that women with a higher level of education had better knowledge regarding breast cancer than women with low educational status. For the prevention of breast cancer, women are the most important stakeholder. There is a need to sensitise women regarding risk factors of breast cancer and preventive practices like BSE.

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