Assessing the practice of breast-self-examination among women on hormonal contraceptives in Lusaka, Zambia.

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Shilengwe, Charity
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The University of Zambia
Breast self examination (BSE) is a technique that is used as a means of screening and a measure for the secondary prevention of breast cancer (BC). The diagnosis of breast cancer at an early stage allows for more treatment options and a high chance of long term survival. The objective of the study was to investigate the practice of BSE among women on hormonal contraceptives in Lusaka, Zambia. The study applied mixed methods quantitative and qualitative dimensions. For quantitative study a Descriptive cross sectional study design was applied using a questionnaire on a study population of 384 respondents aged 20-40 years. The sample was selected using systematic sampling technique from four selected Lusaka District Health facilities. A Focus Group Discussion interview guide was used to collect qualitative data. Statistical analysis was carried out on quantitative data using SPSS version 22. Chi-square test was used to test associations between the Practice of BSE and other independent variables. Binary logistic regression and multiple logistic regressions were done to confirm these associations. The significant level was set at 0.05 with confidence interval of 95%. Thematic analysis was used to analyse qualitative data. This study revealed that majority (72.2%, n= 279) of the women had low knowledge level, only a few (15%, n= 57)) practice BSE regularly and less than half (46%, n=177) were competent in the performance of BSE. Knowledge of BC, Knowledge on BSE, Self efficacy and Perceived benefits significantly influenced the practice of BSE (P=0.017; P=0.001; P=0.001; P=0.007 respectively). This study concluded that majority of study participants had low level knowledge, low self efficacy and did not practice BSE. There is need for the ministry of Health to develop effective health education programmes to empower women with knowledge and skill on BSE. Key Words: Breast self-examination and Breast Cancer
Breast self examination. , Breast cancer.