EVALUATION OF BREAST CANCER AWARENESS AMONG SAUDI FEMALES IN TABUK CITY, SAUDI ARABIA, 2015
*Amirah H. Alenzi, Aeshah S. Alamrani and Yousef S. Alalawi
Background: Breast cancer is the leading cause of death in women worldwide. In Saudi Arabia, breast cancer ranks first among cancerous diseases in females. Objectives: To investigate the level of breast cancer awareness among Saudi females in Tabuk, focusing on knowledge of breast cancer signs and associated risk factors, and breast self-examination. Methods: Cross-sectional survey of 400 women attending the outpatient clinics of King Khalid Hospital in Tabuk city was carried out between 15 July and 30 August 2015 using self-administered questionnaire. Result: It showed that 35% of the Participants in this study aged between 26 and 35 years. The most widely known risk factor for breast cancer was family history (50%).The lowest level of knowledge of risk factor was regarding early menarche (3%) and late menopause (4%) and old age (14%). Other risk factors got moderate response, including lack of breast feeding, smoking, obesity (48%, 38%, and37.5%, respectively). Most of the participants (97.5%) identified breast mass as a symptom for breast cancer. However, non lump symptoms were also known and more than half of the participants were aware of other warning signs such as bloody nipple discharge, skin change, change or retraction of nipple and change in shape/size of breast, accounting for 90%, 75 %, 71 %, and 68% respectively. Furthermore, as many as 71% of subjects identified breast self examination as an early detection measure for breast cancer. 98% of the Participants mentioned that they heard about breast self-examination (BSE). Only 74% of the participants correctly identified that BSE should be performed monthly but 38% had performed it. Conclusion: This study has shown that the participants have poor knowledge about breast cancer and its associated risk factors as well as breast self examination.
Keywords: Breast cancer, Breast self-examination, awareness, Saudi females.
[Full Text Article]