Awareness and practice of breast screening and its impact on early detection and presentation among breast cancer patients attending a clinic in Lagos, Nigeria
Background: Breast cancer is the most common malignancy among females in Nigeria. The concept of breast screening (BS) is that it would result in presentation at earlier stages. We evaluated the impact of BS on early detection and presentation of breast cancer and determined the aspects BS need improvement.
Patients and Methods: All patients with a diagnosis of malignant breast lump attending clinics at a tertiary hospital in Nigeria were recruited into the study over a 2‑year period. Self‑administered questionnaires were given to patients. Data collected were demographics, knowledge about BS, practice of BS, the motivation to practice BS and the source of information on BS.
Results: Of 218 patients seen, 147 (67.4%) patients presented at the surgical outpatient clinic and 71 (32.6%) at the radiotherapy clinic, with age 48.01 ± 0.80 years. A total of 156 (71.6%) were aware of BS, while 62 (28.4%) were not aware. A logistic regression analysis showed that only the level of formal education predicted awareness of BS, P = 0.001 Nagelkerke’s R2 = 0.126. Awareness of BS was mainly from electronic media 87 (55.7%). There was no significant difference in the ages of those aware and practicing BS 48.03 ± 1.05 years, and those not practicing BS 46.32 ± 1.94 years, P = 0.446. There was no significant difference in presentation for those practicing BS 7.41 ± 1.30 months, and those not practicing BS 11.38 ± 2.91 months, P = 0.175, with 64% practicing BS presenting late, while 77% not practicing BS presenting late, χ2 = 2.432, P = 0.488. A logistic regression analysis did not show any demographic or clinical parameters as predictive P = 0.225 Nagelkerke’s R2 = 0.126.
Conclusion: The high level of awareness and practice of BS was not translated into the presentation with early breast cancer.
Key words: Breast screening, mammography, physician clinical examination, self‑breast examination