OBJECTIVE: To assess the knowledge and practice of risk factors, symptoms and screening for breast cancer among health care professionals.
METHODS: A cross sectional study was carried out at The Aga Khan University Hospital from January 2008 to March 2008. A total of 336 health care workers including consultants (48), fellows (17), residents (76), medical officers (14), interns (37), nurses (94) and fourth and final year medical students (50) were requested to fill a questionnaire designed to assess the knowledge about the risk factors, signs and symptoms, screening tools, breast self examination (BSE) and treatment.
RESULTS: More than two third participants had good knowledge about the risk factors and signs of breast cancer except some dissociation regarding association of menarche status and smoking. Majority was aware of the benefits of mammography. More than 80% had the consensus that breast cancer is curable if detected early and more than 50% thought that a surgeon should be consulted first if lump is palpable.
CONCLUSIONS: This study reveals that health care professionals have fairly good awareness regarding the risk factors, symptoms and role of mammography. But some are still deficient in their knowledge regarding screening modalities and BSE method and time and role of chemotherapy. And this can be improved with further education.
Journal of the Pakistan Medical Association
(2009). Knowledge, attitude and preventive practices for breast cancer among health care professionals at Aga Khan Hospital Karachi. Journal of the Pakistan Medical Association, 59(7), 474-8.
Available at: http://ecommons.aku.edu/pakistan_fhs_mc_radiat_oncol/6