Main Article Content
breast self-examination, breast cancer, rural women, Pakistan
Background: Breast cancer develops from the abnormal growth of cells in the breast. It mostly affects women and is a leading source of illness and death around the world. Breast cancer claimed the lives of around 627 thousand women worldwide, according to the World Health Organization. Breast cancer is the leading cause of death and illness among women in low- and middle-income nations (World Health Organization). Despite having sufficient knowledge and a good attitude towards breast self-examination (BSE), urban women in Pakistan do not practice it.
Objective: To increase awareness of BSE through training, with the goal of improving early breast cancer diagnosis rates and survival in Pakistan.
Study design: quasi-experimental study
Place and Duration: This study was conducted in PPHI Karachi from June 2022 to June 2023
Methodology: There were a total of 400 women selected to be a part of this research who lived in rural areas. All the women included in this research were those who had reached puberty and had no history of breast cancer. Those females who have not reached their puberty were not a part of this research. Cronbach's alpha coefficient was found to be 0.5 for all questionnaire items. The questionnaire was used to collect data in small group settings, with the help of community workers who spoke with the women before the sessions began.
Results: Most of the females involved in this research were in the age group of 26 years to 35 years. Overall, 43% of the participants were students. A total of 60% of the women were unmarried. Before the test, 274 females were aware of breast cancer, but after the test, the number increased to 398. Those who believed BSE was a valuable tool performed significantly better on the post-test. For BSE frequency, half of the participants increased their knowledge of monthly examinations, for the timing being shortly after the menstrual cycle, and for all three fundamental processes of BSE.
Conclusion: Prior to the intervention, women had little awareness and were unaware of BSE, putting them at a higher risk of developing breast cancer.
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