Sociocultural factors associated with breast self-examination among Iranian women

Acta Med Iran. 2015;53(1):62-8.


Of the ways to fight breast cancer and reduce deaths hazard due to early detection is one of early detection programs in women's breast self- examination. Examining breast by oneself increase individuals knowledge of her breast health that helps in detecting breast cancer early. Different cultural, social, family and individual factors play roles in women's behavior about breast self- examination applying PEN-3 model in this study is to analyze factors influencing on breast self-examination. The research is a descriptive- analytical, cross-sectional type. Research community consists of women at fertility age of 20-49 in sari. Sample volume is 415 individuals and sampling method is cluster method. In this study, a 50-item questionnaire based on PEN-3 was used. Questions were answered by Likert scoring method. Questionnaire was gathered by personal presence of questioners. Data was analyzed via descriptive statistics and logistic regression methods. Based on the study findings, the most significant positive behaviors related to perceptual factors included effectiveness of disease background in family and relatives (73%), believing in breast self- examination for pursuing health (93%) and the most important negative behaviors were shyness and modesty (83.9%) and increased worry (78.9%). The most remarkable positive behaviors regarding enabling factors covered the skill to do breast examination oneself (35.2%), the availability of health and therapeutic centers (80.7%) and the most significant negative behavior was being busy and lack of time (85.3%). The most important positive behavior about nurturing factors included family consent (68.9%) and the most significant negative one was the inappropriate treatment of health and therapeutic personnel (61.8%). In this study, there is a meaningful difference between employment ages, education with PEN-3 model constituents. Since behaviors due to enabling and nurturing perceptual factors have been important in doing or not doing breast self- examination; thus its worth to take measures to plan some educational and administrative intervention programs about women breast cancer early detection through sufficient knowledge of influential sociocultural factors.

Publication types

  • Multicenter Study

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Breast Neoplasms / diagnosis*
  • Breast Neoplasms / epidemiology
  • Breast Neoplasms / psychology
  • Breast Self-Examination / psychology*
  • Breast Self-Examination / statistics & numerical data
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Early Detection of Cancer / methods*
  • Early Detection of Cancer / psychology
  • Early Detection of Cancer / statistics & numerical data
  • Female
  • Health Behavior*
  • Humans
  • Iran / epidemiology
  • Middle Aged
  • Morbidity / trends
  • Patient Education as Topic*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Women's Health*
  • Young Adult