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Alwan N.A.S.,University of Baghdad | Al-Diwan J.K.A.,Baghdad Medical College | Al-Attar W.M.,Bag University | Eliessa R.A.,Bag University
Asian Pacific Journal of Reproduction

Objective: To evaluate the level of knowledge, attitude and practice towards breast cancer and breast self examination (BSE) among a sample of educated Iraqi population affiliated to Kirkuk University in Iraq. Methods: The total number of participants was 304 (256 females and 48 males); comprising students (85.2%; n=259), teaching staff (8.2%; n=25) and administrative university staff (6.6%; n=20). The mean age of the participants was (23.8±8.3) years. Each was asked to complete a pre-coded standardized questionnaire. Variables were dichotomized and multiple logistic regressions were applied to test the association of independent variables with practicing BSE. Results: It was observed that 177 (69.1%) of females have heard about the BSE. One hundred and nine of the female respondents (42.6%) reported that they have practiced BSE. Of those who have heard about BSE only 57.4% were in fact practicing the technique. Multiple logistic regression revealed that age of the respondents and knowledge on the means of early detection, the effect of nulliparity on the probability of contacting the disease and factors that could decrease the incidence of breast cancer were significantly associated with practicing BSE (. P=0.019, 0.03, 0.03 and 0.007 respectively). Overall, it has been demonstrated that 89.7% of the female participants in this study presented a positive attitude towards learning the correct procedure of BSE with an intention to instruct others on the technique. Conclusions: although the knowledge about breast cancer and practice of BSE was relatively weak in Kirkuk, probably attributable to the long standing conflicts in the city, yet the positive attitude towards learning the screening techniques and the intention to teach others were fairly encouraging. Knowledge and practice can be endorsed by promoting nationwide public health awareness campaigns and establishing sustained educational framework and policy guidelines. © 2012 Hainan Medical College. Source

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