Adherence to breast cancer screening guidelines among African-American women of differing employment status

Cancer Nurs. 1995 Aug;18(4):258-69.


The purpose of this study was to identify and compare the adherence to breast cancer screening guidelines [monthly breast self-examination (BSE), age-related mammography, yearly professional breast examination (PBE)] among African-American women (AAW) of differing employment status. The Breast Cancer Screening Model served as the organizing framework for this study. One hundred fifty-four subjects were quota sampled according to age and employment group status. Findings showed that 63% of all subjects practiced monthly BSE and 76% had undergone a yearly PBE. Only 20% of all subjects had undergone a mammogram according to the age-related guidelines. Overall, breast cancer screening rates were lower than recommended across all employment groups. Variables that uniquely explained 74% of the variance in monthly BSE included level of education, marital status, social influence, knowledge of BSE, and intention to do BSE in the future. Age group, previous instruction on mammography, income, and perceived barriers related to mammography explained 15% of the variance in age-related mammography. Finally, marital status, previous information on PBE, and intrinsic motivation explained 42% of the variance in yearly PBE. Together, these findings highlight the need for (a) the development of strategies that will promote long-term adherence to all three screening guidelines, and (b) the design of qualitative studies using a representative sample of AAW of differing socioeconomic backgrounds.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • African Americans* / statistics & numerical data
  • Aged
  • Breast Neoplasms / diagnosis*
  • Breast Neoplasms / ethnology*
  • Breast Self-Examination / statistics & numerical data
  • Employment* / statistics & numerical data
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Mammography / statistics & numerical data
  • Middle Aged
  • Motivation
  • Patient Compliance*
  • Socioeconomic Factors
  • United States / epidemiology