Perceptions on Breast Cancer Pattern: Medical Help Seeking Among Breast Cancer Patients

Perception on breast cancer influences the help seeking pattern of breast cancer patients. Negative perception causes delay in help seeking. Outcome or survival rate of breast cancer has a relation on perception. A cross sectional study was done during July 2015-June 2016, to assess the perception on breast cancer and to find out the help seeking pattern and extent of help seeking time among breast cancer patients. A total of 200 patients were selected following the convenient method of sampling from National Institute of Cancer Research and Hospital. Dhaka. Face to face interviews were taken from the diagnosed breast cancer patients admitted in the hospital. Forty five percent patients were illiterate and 83% were house wife. The mean age was 42 and mean monthly family income was around 9000 taka. Two thirds of the respondents were present with locally advance stage (stage III) and three fourth of the patients identified the lump as 1st symptom. Four of 10 patients first sought help to homeopathy for their cancer diagnosis and treatment. Mean help seeking time was 11 months. Nine out of 10 patients were agreed with the statement, ‘I was healthy’. Maximum respondents (81.0%) agreed with the statement, ‘wait and see what would be happened’. Results showed that there was a relationship between delay help seeking and the statement of perception. There were significant associations between the perception on expensive treatment, perception on ‘I am healthy’, perception on ‘lump related with menstruation’, perception on ‘wait and see what would be happened’, perception on ‘feared to do operation, it may cause death’ and perception on family income and the delay in help seeking. Along with perception on breast cancer use of alternative medicine, lack of social support, health care delivery system, economic factor etc. influence the pattern and delay in help seeking. Further to the existing efforts to correct the perception for early diagnosis and treatment to overcome this problem is suggested.


Download FIle