Female Nurses and Breast Self-Examination: Can They Play A Role in Early Detection of Breast Cancer?( Brief Communication )

Osama Abu Salem, Montaha Abdulla Hassan


Objective: In the past 20 years, breast cancer incidence in the world has had a dramatic increase of 50-100%, which strongly supports the need for breast cancer prevention, and screening programs .The purpose of this study was to identify and investigate the knowledge and practice of breast self- examination (BSE). In addition to examining the factors influencing the compliance of (BSE) among female nurses as nurses can promote monthly BSE.

Methods: The study was conducted in the period between January and December 2002. (80) Female nurses from Prince Rashid Military Hospital constituted the study population. The questionnaire contained items on the demographic characteristics of the respondents, knowledge of breast cancer, attitudes toward BSE and questions regarding the practice of BSE. The analysis included descriptive statistics to examine the association between BSE and the person's medical history, knowledge of BSE and attitudes toward BSE.

Results: The results of the study indicated that 52% of the sample studied performs BSE. Approximately, 30% of those who perform BSE said they learned information regarding BSE during their work experience. A significant correlation was found between higher levels in work experience and BSE practice. Except for age, no significant correlation was found between the socio-demographic factors and BSE practice. The sample showed a strong belief in breast lump as a causing factor of breast cancer and this had a significant correlation with BSE practice.

Conclusion: Positive correlation was found between nurses work experience and their practice of BSE as working nurses. Studies like these can enhance the knowledge regarding BSE among nurses and other medical professionals.


Breast, self-examination, nurses

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