Aim: This paper is a report of a study to evaluate the knowledge and practice of Jordanian nurses in relation to breast self-examination.
Background: Studies have shown that women who have learned about breast self-examination have positive attitudes toward breast cancer and practise breast self-examination more frequently, and that nurses who teach their clients about methods of early detection and breast self-examination are more knowledgeable about breast cancer screening and breast self-examination techniques than those who do not. Therefore, it is important to understand nurses' knowledge about breast cancer and its early detection.
Methods: A cross-sectional design was used, with a convenience sample of 347 Registered Nurses at three large cities in Jordan (response rate 95%). Data collection took place in 2005 using a self-administrated questionnaire with three parts and based on the American Cancer Society's guidelines: demographics, knowledge, and practice of breast self-examination.
Results: Nurses reported high levels of knowledge of breast self-examination (M = 7.6, SD. 2.7). A high proportion of nurses reported doing breast self-examination in the past 12 months (85%), but only 17.7% reported doing so on a monthly basis. None of the demographic characteristics was found to be associated with the practice of breast self-examination.
Conclusion: More health education about monthly breast self-examination and prevention strategies is needed for nurses and their women patients, especially for Arabic women.