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Breast Cancer Worry among Women Awaiting Mammography: Is It Unfounded? Does Prior Counseling Help?

By Susan K Steinemann, Maria BJ Chun, Dustin H Huynh and Katherine Loui

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to explore the prevalence of breast cancer anxiety and risk counseling in women undergoing mammography, and the association with known risk factors for cancer. Women awaiting mammography were surveyed regarding anxiety, prior breast cancer risk counseling, demographic and risk factors. Anxiety was assessed via 7-point Likert-type scale (LS). Risk was defined by Gail model or prior breast cancer. Data were analyzed by nonparametric methods; significance determined at alpha = 0.05. Of 227 women surveyed, 54 were classified “higher risk”. Counseling prevalence was similar (52%) for all ethnic groups, but higher (72%, P<0.001) for “higher risk” women. On average, women awaiting screening/diagnostic mammography were somewhat worried (median LS = 4). Worry was significantly higher (P<0.05) in “higher risk” women (LS = 5), and in women living outside Honolulu (LS = 6). Counseling by primary care physicians (PCP) did not correlate with lower worry scores. It was concluded that most women awaiting mammography are not unduly anxious. Additionally, the findings showed a correlation between a woman's concern about developing cancer with known risk factors and rural residence

Topics: Articles
Publisher: University Clinical, Education & Research Associate (UCERA)
OAI identifier: oai:pubmedcentral.nih.gov:3158373
Provided by: PubMed Central
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