Knowledge and Practice of Breast Self Examination among Female Students of Tertiary Institutions in Abia State, Nigeria

Iwuoha E. C. *

Abia State University Teaching Hospital, Aba, Nigeria.

Ufot I. P.

College of Medicine, Abia State University Uturu, Nigeria.

Onuabuchi T. F.

College of Medicine, Abia State University Uturu, Nigeria.

Amogu C. C.

College of Medicine, Abia State University Uturu, Nigeria.

Onuoha I. E.

College of Medicine, Abia State University Uturu, Nigeria.

Ijoma C. E.

Abia State Specialist Hospital and Diagnostic Center, Umuahia, Nigeria.

*Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.


Abstract

Background: Early detection and diagnosis of illnesses by screening is a key public health premise. Breast self-examination is a cheap and convenient method of early detection of cancer of the breast, especially in resource poor countries; Women who frequently perform breast self-examinations (BSE) look for any lumps or abnormal changes in order to seek immediate medical assistance. There is increasing incidence of detection of breast cancer among young women, this has been attributed to a lack of knowledge and practice of breast self-examination (BSE).

Aim: To determine the knowledge, and practice of routine breast self-examination among the female students of tertiary institutions in Abia State, Nigeria.

Materials and Methods: This was a cross-sectional study conducted among 609 female students from five tertiary institutions in Abia State, Nigeria. Research instruments were structured, self-administered and pretested questionnaires. Data collected were analyzed using Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS Version 25). 

Results: Majority of the participants were between the ages of 18-22 years. Majority of the respondents had heard of BSE (88.8%) mostly from social media (37.7%).  A good number knew the steps involved in BSE (72.7%); while 467(76.7%) of respondents, had practiced BSE before. However, frequency of practice was low, and majority who didn’t practice frequently cited forgetfulness (38.5%) as their major reason. Most respondents agreed that BSE was very relevant (72.4%), and that families needed to be taught BSE (98.4%). Most respondents (81.3%) had no family history of breast lump while 87.8% had no family history of breast cancer. Occupation of respondents’ father was associated with knowledge of BSE and this was statistically significant; p< 0.05.

Conclusion: This study demonstrates good knowledge, and good practice, however frequency of practice was low.

Keywords: BSE, knowledge, practice, students, tertiary institutions


How to Cite

Iwuoha E. C., I. P. , U., Onuabuchi T. F., Amogu C. C., Onuoha I. E., & Ijoma C. E. (2023). Knowledge and Practice of Breast Self Examination among Female Students of Tertiary Institutions in Abia State, Nigeria. Journal of Scientific Research and Reports, 29(10), 35–42. https://doi.org/10.9734/jsrr/2023/v29i101794

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