Breast Cancer Prevalance, Awareness and Perception of Intervention Techniques among Women in Lagos State: A Psycho-Social Analysis

Adetifa, F.A (2010-10)

A Thesis Submitted to the School of Postgraduate Studies, University of Lagos

Thesis

This study conducted a psycho-social analysis of breast cancer focusing on variables such as prevalence of the disease within the study area, awareness and perception about it and perception of the various intervention techniques designed to control the spread of the disease. The research work was limited to Lagos State, using selected local government areas in the State. The research designs employed were the descriptive survey design coupled with the qualitative research design. A total of one thousand respondents were used as sample for the study. They were made up of 200 subjects from each of the five selected local government areas in the State. These subjects were selected using the random sampling technique. The questionnaire, interview schedule and medical records were the instruments employed for data gathering. The questionnaire and interview schedule were developed by the researcher and validated by the supervisors and other experts from other departments while the breast cancer records were gathered from selected hospitals used for the study. An initial pilot study was carried out to test the reliability of the research instruments. Chi-square, Two-Way Analysis of Variance (Anova) Duncan Multiple Range tests, Test of proportion and Factor analysis were equally employed in testing all stated hypotheses at 0.05 confidence level. A conceptual model was developed after determining the psycho-social factors responsible for breast cancer awareness, prevalence and perception in Lagos State. The findings obtained from the study are as follows: - Women’s education significantly influence their willingness to participate in breast cancer awareness programmes. - Women’s awareness of breast self examination, clinical breast examination and signs and symptoms of breast cancer significantly influence their practice of breast self examination and clinical breast examination. - Religious affiliation is a factor that hinders women from seeing male Radiologist for clinical breast examination to detect lumps as well as undergoing mastectomy. - Prevalence of breast cancer significantly varies from one profession to the other. - Women’s emotions, feelings and perception significantly influences their willingness to discuss and participate in breast cancer and intervention techniques. - There is a significant difference in the prevalence level of breast cancer across the ages and periods studied. - Nine psycho-social factors were found to be responsible for prevalence, awareness and perception of breast cancer in Lagos State. Recommendations  Awareness creation should be extended to students, particularly from the lower secondary schools level.  Professions which predispose women to high risk of breast cancer should be centre of attraction for awareness creators.  Awareness should be extended to Religious circles to lessen its influences on women. A line of demarcation should be drawn between faith and reality.

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