Breast self-examination: an analysis of self-reported practice

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Abstract

Breast self-examination: an analysis of self-reported practice

The aim of this study was to investigate the relationship between the performance of breast self-examination (BSE) and age, place of residence, ethnic background and religion, as well as whether a group willing to take part in an interview regarding BSE mirrored the whole population. Six hundred and ninety-four (69.4%) women, aged 25-80, responded to the questionnaire. Of these, 69.6% examined their breasts. Whether the subjects lived in urban or rural areas was of no importance for practicing BSE, nor was country of birth or number of years in Sweden. A larger proportion of women aged 45-80 practiced BSE compared with women aged 25-44 (P < 0.001), the former practising BSE once a month or more. Step-wise logistic regression analysis showed that, for the whole sample as well as for the interview group, age was the only significant predictor of breast self-examination (P < 0.001). There were no significant differences between the whole sample and the interview group. The importance of younger women performing the examination is stressed. Due to nurses being strategically located in a wide range of geographical locations, allowing them to meet women in different settings, they are a good choice for motivating women to practise BSE.

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