Purpose: to inform healthy women about breast cancer and screen them, as well as to look for any relationship between demographic and clinical findings and breast cancer.
Methods: thirty-five health teams were created prior to the study. The teams were primarily trained for breast examination and for screening methods to detect breast cancer.
Results: a total of 77,934 subjects were evaluated. Clinical breast examination (CBE) was performed in 66% (n=51,706) of the participants. The characteristics of the subjects in the examined group were similar to those in the group refusing examination. The percentage of the subjects who declined examination was 2-fold higher in the ≥ 60 year age group compared to younger women. A breast mass was detected in 2,838 (6%) subjects who had undergone breast examination. Lower educational level and urban dwellers showed higher incidence of suspicious mass in CBE. Fifty-eight women were diagnosed with breast cancer. The cumulative incidence of breast cancer was 7.5/10.000 for all of the study population and 10.1/10.000 for women with CBE.
Conclusion: elderly subjects, those living in rural areas and women with low educational and lower socio-economic levels should be convinced to undergo screening for breast cancer.